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 Tuesday, 24th April 2012, 17:16:39

McDonald's to trial cloud-based mobile payments

McDonald's to trial cloud-based mobile payments

McDonald's has agreed to participate in the testing of a new NFC (near field communication) payment scheme.

It is part of a collaboration between the fast food giant and Austrian mobile network operators A1 and Paybox Bank, who designed the service.

The NFC payment service, which also involves local supermarket chain Merkur, allows consumers to make payments of up to €25 (£20) without having to enter their pin number. 

Most providers, such as Visa's PayWave and Mastercard's PayPass solutions, are based on EMV 'chip and pin technology'.

However, Paybox NFC processes payments 'in the cloud' and merchants use a small Paybox NFC unit instead of a point of sale device.

One thing which makes the service comparatively more secure than its rivals is that it offers better production of consumers' personal details.

Customers have an account with Paybox and designate a bank account to use for payments.

Their Paybox account number and their mobile phone number are kept and used in the 'back office', and they download the Paybox app to their smartphones.

No sensitive data is stored on the contactless sticker of the device or the secure element on their NFC phone.

The payments are deducted a few days later.

Paybox Bank's chief executive Bernd Hartweger said that the new technology would help to streamline retail transactions for smaller purchases.

"Searching for small change or waiting to be given money back is time consuming. With Paybox NFC, we can offer our customers a state-of-the-art alternative," he told

The technology will be tested out with a relatively small sample: just 500 consumers over a few months.

However, if it is successful, it could be expanded to include additional points of sale, business partners and payment services.

Andreas Schmidlechner, marketing and communications director for McDonald's Austria, said that the Paybox pilot had the potential to revolutionise the fast food business by making ordering and payment processes even more simple and quick than they already are.

Posted by Kevin Jenson

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