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Mobile Payments

Nets goes digital and contactless

Thursday 9 February 2017 | 10:47 AM CET

Singapore electronic payments network Nets is to go digital and contactless within the coming weeks.

The contactless function will let users make payments with Nets below USD 100 - a standard limit set by the industry to prevent the abuse of lost cards - without a personal identification number (PIN). Payments above USD 100 will still require a PIN or fingerprint authentication.

The function will be available in several forms, including credit cards, which are due to be issued by banks in this half of the year, mobile phones and even wearables like smartwatches.

The cellphone option will be rolled out by banks soon and will operate via an application called Nets Pay, which will be similar to the Apple Pay mobile payment service. It will require consumers to add their card details to a digital wallet on their phone.

Consumers with phones that have near-field communications (NFC) technology will be able to pay with a tap on terminals with a payment reader.

Those whose phones do not have NFC can pay by scanning a QR code on terminals with the camera. QR codes can also be used to make Nets payments on e-commerce websites.

The payment network is also in talks with AliPay and DBS Bank over its PayLah mobile wallet app, to enable payment on Nets Pay from those two services.

Moreover, that consumers will also be able to make payments within the Nets Pay app itself in future.

Nets is also upgrading terminals to accept payment from cards of all banks. Instead of several different terminals at a check-out counter from different issuers, cashiers will only need to use one. This also means consumers do not have to worry about not having certain cards.

Supermarket chain Sheng Siong started using these new terminals in late December 2016.