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Visa To Offer Person-To-Person Payments

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the time-for-paypal-to-invest-in-some-accountability dept.

The Almighty Buck 187

angry tapir writes "Visa has announced it is planning a new service that will let US customers send money directly to one another, presenting new competition to PayPal. Visa already lets people send money to Visa accounts in many other countries, but this will be the first time it will offer the service in the US."

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Credit card fees (4, Insightful)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530834)

You'd think with the enormous increase in processing power [wikipedia.org] experienced over the past 4 decades, the amount of money required for operating the credit card networks would have plummeted.

So why are credit card fees still anywhere from 2% on up (borne by sellers)?

And is it (much) more expensive to send $100 vs. $10?

Re:Credit card fees (1)

mehrotra.akash (1539473) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530872)

I would guess the reduction in cost is made up for by the increase in salaries and fraud..

Re:Credit card fees (3, Insightful)

viablos (2018696) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530906)

Nothing in the business is based solely on costs. Of course they will keep taking 2% if they can. What comes to person-to-person payments, credit card phishers must love this as it cuts the middle-man. No need to buy items and resell them, just transfer money directly.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531344)

Nothing in any (profitable, ongoing concern) business is based solely on costs.

Re:Credit card fees (4, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531508)

In theory, a competitive market will result in the price of a commodity or service equalling its marginal cost of production.

The fact that the amount the CC guys skim off the top of transactions(in addition to their loan-sharking business) has barely budged despite what are almost certainly declining costs leads one to suspect that the market may not be especially competitive.

The phrase "cosy duopoly", in fact, tends to spring to mind...

Re:Credit card fees (2)

lgw (121541) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532686)

In theory, a competitive market will result in the price of a commodity or service equalling its marginal cost of production.

I've never heard that theory - sounds linke something someone would make up to discredit free markets. A competitive market should result in enough profits going to owners of capital that keeping their capital in that market makes sense.

The fact that the amount the CC guys skim off the top of transactions(in addition to their loan-sharking business) has barely budged despite what are almost certainly declining costs

Visa doesn't make any money of "their loan sharking business" - the fact that they never have is what allowed them to invent a new kind of money a few decades ago. But they're playing catch-up now.

Maybe you haven't done much with data center operations, but the cost of hardware isn't the dominant cost. And Visa in particular has traditionally been a mainframe shop, so they haven't been seeing much decline in costs over the year - but since cloud is the new mainframe I'm sure they're starting to see some now.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35530926)

Obviously to exploit the card holders and users. It's how they make money.

Re:Credit card fees (4, Insightful)

Tridus (79566) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530934)

Because there's no particular reason for them to lower the fee?

VISA's not in the business of saying "well gee we have too much money today, lets cut the fees!"

Re:Credit card fees (3, Interesting)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531056)

Well, I guess we're seeing market failure.

Basically, an oligopoly between Visa and Mastercard.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531188)

Failure? In what way?

Re:Credit card fees (3, Insightful)

stomv (80392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531258)

If it's the case that the costs associated with offering the product are far less than the fees, then there is market failure because in a well operating market, charging too much invites competition who will undercut your prices.

Are Visa and Mastercard charging so much that there's room to be undercut? I don't know. Ask Discover.

Re:Credit card fees (2)

Sky Cry (872584) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531268)

It's because the card is issued to the customer, while the the cost of transaction is paid by the merchant. The customer has no benefit in moving from one credit card company to another. So the credit card companies have no benefit in decreasing the fees either.

Re:Credit card fees (2)

i-linux123 (2003962) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532290)

In a bigger part of EU (Except for: Britain, Czech Republic, Hungary, Belgium, Ireland, Netherlands, Slovenia, Estonia, Norway, Malta and Spain), it isn't allowed to take a surcharge. Many stores are still tricking customers with the surcharge since it isn't widely known. After a google search I see that something similar is implemented in US states too: http://fso.cpasitesolutions.com/premium/le/06_le_ic/fg/fg-merchants.html#MORE:B [cpasitesolutions.com]

Re:Credit card fees (2)

twistedsymphony (956982) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532472)

this could very well change with person to person transfers.... unless the fees are free or very small people who frequently make transfers would likely switch to whichever company has the lowest rate. At very least if Visa is smart they'll undercut PayPal.

Re:Credit card fees (3, Insightful)

kvothe (2013374) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531476)

Sort of like the oligopoly in the realm of American cell phone service? Or land line internet service? Or in the gasoline market? One could argue that the American market has failed many times over, due to a few large corporations dominating the relevant market, and doing everything in their power to maximize their profits at the expense of everyone else. I wish I knew what could be done to change the situation, but it seems like so many factors went into creating the situation that we find ourselves in that it would be very complicated indeed to extricate ourselves.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531686)

Yeah, from the perspective of many corporations, lack of oligopoly is market failure.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

garytencents (1714774) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531026)

How's that rewards card treating you? Cause that's what my company and a million others are paying a good portion of those fees for. On a related note - why should they give up their profit, it's not like consumers give a rat's ass about the (hidden) cost to the merchant and you can well imagine that a set cost of those fees is used to elect US Senators (see Delaware). Gary

Re:Credit card fees (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531130)

Well, not as a buyer, but as a seller. These days, a lot of professionals and small businesses are taking payment by credit card.

Yeah, I know, the fee pays for the convenience of cc billing, and there has to be a fee. What we're talking about is why, with the huge decrease in operating costs plus massive increase in volumes (everybody uses a CC these days), they're still charging the same rates.

Because they can. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531402)

They charge the fees because they can.

Myself I'm okay paying 1-2% for the convenience of not using cash.

I can carry thousands of dollars in purchasing power, and if I lose it, no big deal.
I don't have to manage cash, count coins etc.
I get full detailed records of what I spend money on.

Seems like a pretty nice deal to me.

Re:Credit card fees (4, Insightful)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531464)

Would you go to your employer and say "Hey, I've figured out how to save money on my bills at home, could you cut down my salary by 10% to compensate for that please?"

Re:Credit card fees (1)

gknoy (899301) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532866)

Usually they just tell us they're not increasing salaries, because they need to invest in X, Y, and Z, inflation be damned. (:

Re:Credit card fees (1)

aztracker1 (702135) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531834)

As mentioned above, the transaction isn't the only operational cost.. covering fraudulent activity is a huge issue, unless you'd prefer to have individuals foot that bill...

Re:Credit card fees (4, Interesting)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531828)

4% back on gas (that's about 0.15 per gallon, lately)

2% back on restaurants

3% back on some class of merchants I can't remember

and 1% back on just about everything else.

We get a $100ish check for every $9000 or so that we spend through the card.

Rewards cards are part of the landscape now... get used to it, or (as an industry, collectively) grow a pair and do something about it. What the "market failure" whiners fail to account for is the massive investment Visa and Mastercard made across the last 40 years to roll out their system worldwide. Of course they're entrenched, they would have been irresponsible stewards of their investors' capital if they didn't entrench themselves along the way.

As a consumer, I view cash as a "premium" payment option. If I value the anonymity that comes with cash, then I'm willing to go through the trouble to get it, the ATM fees, and the lack of rebate from my credit card. If you're a merchant who accepts credit cards, I assume you've already built in a 5% margin to cover that - if you're a small time place (like a hair salon or locally owned restaurant), I might pay cash as a sort of extra tip, both dodging the credit card fees and making income reporting potentially optional. But, most of the time, credit cards are just a built in cost, a tax paid to the money handlers, and I choose to deal with a bank that slides a little of it back my way.

Life has never been simple, when you were a child, you thought it was and you might have been taught it was, or should be, but those teachers were liars. Paybacks, graft and corruption are not just in the Mafia's domain - they have been a part of "respectable" business since long before the Magna Carta.

Re:Credit card fees (5, Informative)

eln (21727) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531060)

Every time you buy something with your credit card, Visa sends that payment to the retailer in cash. It does this by carefully placing each individual dollar bill on a velvet pillow, and having it lovingly hand-carried to its destination by a Visa representative, who is dressed in a tuxedo and wearing white gloves.

So yes, it does get more expensive the more money you send, and Visa is practically running a charity by only charging 2%.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531222)

I take it you share my frustration. Somebody mod this up.

(Oh, and before posting a rant about CC fees, I guess I should have remembered that the electrons for higher dollar amounts weigh more, hence it costs more money to ship them through the tubes of the Internet [wikipedia.org] .)

Re:Credit card fees (2)

ArsonSmith (13997) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532498)

Perhaps someday you will learn about supply and demand, and how the price of a good or service is only very loosely tied to the cost to create/perform that good or service.

If you don't like the fees, don't pay for the service.

Re:Credit card fees (5, Interesting)

Maximum Prophet (716608) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531658)

I like the joke, but as the amount of the transfer goes up, so does the risk. (The risk the money won't be repaid, or the risk the transaction is fraudulent) So, yes, it does cost more to send more money. Does it cost exactly what they charge? Not at all, they can charge what they can get away with.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35532300)

No, it doesn't. Visa has zero liability, all the charges of fraud are borne by the retailer.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

compro01 (777531) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532654)

the risk the transaction is fraudulent.

Hahahahaha.

The credit card company has 0 risk in that regard. They simply yank the money back from the merchant and leave them without the money or the product. I used to work for a company that made POS systems and we had several customers driven out of business by that bullshit and the credit card company's disinterest in taking security and fraud seriously.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

tukang (1209392) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532744)

The risk of not getting repaid is held by the banks and not Visa. This is why Visa held up relatively well during the financial crisis while bank stocks were tanking.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

milkmage (795746) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531078)

convenience.
no matter who issues your visa, they're all on the same "network" so you can use it anywhere - visa is that network.

Re:Credit card fees (2)

SimonTheSoundMan (1012395) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531182)

Visa offer a service. They have to make money, from for example, off debit cards.

2%, still cheaper than handling physical money.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

poetmatt (793785) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531226)

Why? Because Visa wants hilarious profit margins and how many competitors are going to exist?

Square is about the only one I can think of that is mainstream.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531488)

MasterCard?

Re:Credit card fees (1)

denis-The-menace (471988) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531360)

That's because there is no such thing as Net Neutrality for credit cards.
The old way of thinking was imposed and Greed was satisfied.

Re:Greed (1)

TaoPhoenix (980487) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532212)

Greed is never satisfied.

Re:Credit card fees (2)

rtaylor (70602) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531526)

So why are credit card fees still anywhere from 2% on up (borne by sellers)?

Isn't most of that basically insurance? The percentage varies with the risk of the merchant (online shops are higher, grocery stores can get lower rates). My card has bit hit with fraud a couple of times over the last decade. Both times I called Visa and they made the charges disappear.

While they probably didn't eat most of those fees (chargebacks or whatever back to the merchant) they probably did have a fair amount of overhead for those tasks.

There was one charge that Visa probably ate. The merchant went bankrupt and disappeared after charging my card but before shipping the product. 4 to 6 weeks delivery became 8 weeks before I got Visa involved.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531646)

Well that and it is 2% for Visa, but for American Express it is 3-4%. However American Express also doesn't normally collect interest on the monthly payments(yes there are exceptions).

Visa and Mastercard really make their money on the fact that so many people have continuos rolling debt every month that builds interest.

Re:Credit card fees (3, Informative)

Dragonslicer (991472) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532206)

Visa and Mastercard really make their money on the fact that so many people have continuos rolling debt every month that builds interest.

Really? I had always thought it was the issuing bank that kept the interest.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35532954)

You're correct, the issuing bank keeps the interest because they're the ones making the loan.

Visa keeps a small part of that 2%, and both the issuing (as in issuing the card) and acquiring (as in acquiring the transaction) banks unevenly split the rest of the interchange fees.

Re:Credit card fees (4, Informative)

justin12345 (846440) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531550)

Just try using Western Union. Then come back and whine about a 2% transaction fee.

It's especially hilarious because WU will actually ask you if you are sending money to make a purchase, because that is not allowed. You have to make up a story that you are sending money to your old roommate, for bills you never paid (even though you are actually buying some Japanese cell phone that turns into a small dog with laser eyes).

Re:Credit card fees (1)

Rockoon (1252108) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531740)

So why are credit card fees still anywhere from 2% on up (borne by sellers)?

You aren't factoring in the real costs of the service which is when the credit card companies don't get paid what is owed to them, where they end up selling the debt at a large discount to a collection agency.

Nearly 1.3 million bankruptcies were closed in 2009 alone, with only ~40,000 of them being by businesses. You can imagine that these weren't by people that owed an average of only $100. Its more like an average of $10,000+. Billion of dollars don't get paid back to credit card companies each year.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531914)

So why are credit card fees still anywhere from 2% on up (borne by sellers)?

You aren't factoring in the real costs of the service which is when the credit card companies don't get paid what is owed to them, where they end up selling the debt at a large discount to a collection agency.

Nearly 1.3 million bankruptcies were closed in 2009 alone, with only ~40,000 of them being by businesses. You can imagine that these weren't by people that owed an average of only $100. Its more like an average of $10,000+. Billion of dollars don't get paid back to credit card companies each year.

Sheesh, you'd think those risks would be borne by the banks lending the money, not the CC companies. And you'd think that those banks would charge interest on unpaid debts to offset the risks of nonpayment.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

Compaqt (1758360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532068)

This is actually a good point, and different from the fraudulent card use issue.

On the other hand, it should only apply to payments on credit, and not debit cards.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

SwedishPenguin (1035756) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532748)

AFAIK, interest is supposed to cover that, and not all Visa cards are credit cards. Mine is debit for instance, I would never put my small purchases like a coffee on credit, that just seems insane. (I also have a Mastercard credit card, used only in exceptional circumstances)
The only reason for that 2% is to earn the banks billions and billions in profit..

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531954)

In EU (At least most of the countries that have adopted the regulation), they aren't allowed to take surcharge on any card payments.

Re:Credit card fees (1)

rsilvergun (571051) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532146)

One, because the can be, but two, because it costs lots and lots of money to move that much money around. Every time you swipe a Visa they're LENDING money to be paid back. They have to keep the money on hand to pay all that, which in turn means borrowing money themselves.

Re:Credit card fees (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35532562)

Card user -> Merchant -> Card processor -> Visa -> Bank that issues the card -> Card user

Again.. The issuing bank is not Visa. The issuing bank with the Visa logo is responsible for the users debt, payments, and the float of money from the end users. The merchant or the intermediate "card payment processor" the merchant choses to use for processing the user payments is by default responsible for any fraud unless they can PROVE they are not beyond a reasonable doubt.
Visa does not handle the consumer debt and very little of the fraud expense. The 2% is for them to shuffle money and transaction data around as the facilitator.

Finally.... PAYPAL sucks! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35530900)

Finally.... PAYPAL sucks!

Cut out the middleman (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35530968)

Less people to pay for services, more competition, lower prices, better service. We like this.

Wait (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35530982)

The money isn't stored on the card. Everything still goes through Visa. I can hardly wait to see the fees for this one... How's this different from any other transfer? How do you have a *Visa* account without a bank account?

Re:Wait (1)

schnikies79 (788746) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531328)

A Visa (or Mastercard) debit card.

Re:Wait (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531364)

Which still be tracked and disabled by a central bank.. Not good. Same shit in a different package. And the tax is too high..

Re:Wait (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531784)

Shitty as banking looks down there (I'm Canadian) .. I have to imagine US banks are a hell of a lot more regulated than paypal, which can pretty much do whatever the hell it wants and answer to no one.

Re:Wait (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532138)

Paypal didn't crash the economy... The law doesn't do much good when the cop looks the other way. There's nothing here that's a game changer, not that it was meant to be.. It's there to drive the hook a little deeper.

Re:Wait a minute... (1)

khr (708262) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532390)

The money isn't stored on the card.

Wait, what are you talking about? I always take my cash and my card to a friendly neighborhood merchant who puts the money on the card. He says he has a machine in the back room that does it, so he takes both and after a couple of minutes he returns and gives me the card back.

what about privacy? (1)

Dr_Ken (1163339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531002)

Look for the government and lesser snoops to dive on this like a duck on june bug.

Re:what about privacy? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531504)

What about it? How is this any different to using PayPal?

Re:what about privacy? (1)

Dr_Ken (1163339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531898)

It's not. That's the problem.

Re:what about privacy? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531574)

You might want to take a look at the financial data that banks and similar institutions are already required to divulge...

Re:what about privacy? (1)

Dr_Ken (1163339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531862)

Oh I know. That's why I prefer my PTP transactions to be me handing over (or accepting) banknotes. Unfortunately this is hard to do if you're in Michigan and you want give your pal in Ontario $12 USDs. Not a big deal really but who wants the "imperial entanglements" that go with converting USDs to CDs and paying the conversion fees, showing ID (which will be recorded), and etc.? And of course if what you're buying or selling is pr0n or something else you'd rather not disclose (or be able to be discovered) what's the alternative? Not PayPal that's for sure.

Finally... (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531010)

Something that makes absolute sense, business and personal.
I like VISA better now...but will this be also for canada?

Re:Finally... (1)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531408)

I was more surprised this wasn't available before in the US. Now I can better understand why anybody would ever use PayPal. I never understood what they offered that wasn't already available for free with any major bank.

Just how many things that the rest of the world takes for granted is unavailable in US?

Re:Finally... (1)

DanTheStone (1212500) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532104)

In the US, Paper checks are free and transferring money electronically costs us money.

Re:Finally... (1)

Carewolf (581105) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532768)

But why? Paper checks cost the banks money to process and the banks can't wait to get rid of them (and cut down on personal...). Well, couldn't wait to get rid of them of them, they are practically non-existing and only used when doing business with US partners.

PayPal advantage? (4, Insightful)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531016)

From TFA:

As the leader in global online payments for the last twelve years, PayPal has unmatched advantages that we believe put us ahead of the competition...

For example. Since we're not regulated like a bank or real credit merchant, we can do things like freeze or disable your account simply because we feel like it or someone complained about you, or whatever. Don't worry though, customer support will explain everything and get you sorted out in a jiffy.

Re:PayPal advantage? (3, Interesting)

MichaelKristopeit414 (2018850) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531242)

paypal stole $200 that was in my account paid by players of my online market simulation game... the game included narcotics, so paypal assumed the drugs in the simulation were real. not real enough to contact authorities, just real enough to steal my money.

paypal will answer for their transgressions.

Re:PayPal advantage? (1)

TheThiefMaster (992038) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531334)

Paypal is a bank. A European bank.

Re:PayPal advantage? (3, Informative)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531490)

Paypal is a bank. A European bank.

Well... perhaps in Luxembourg. From PayPal Bank Status [wikipedia.org] :

Peter Thiel, the founder of PayPal, has stated that PayPal is not a bank because it does not engage in fractional-reserve banking.

In the United States, PayPal is licensed as a money transmitter on a state-by-state basis.[47] PayPal is not classified as a bank in the United States ...

Commencing 2 July 2007, ... PayPal moved its European operations from the UK to Luxembourg. As a Luxembourg entity, it is since regulated as a bank by the Commission de Surveillance du Secteur Financier (CSSF) and provides PayPal service throughout the European Union.

So *that* clears things up. :-)

Good Grief (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531448)

People who keep any significant balance in their PayPal account are idiots anyway. It's certainly not necessary to pay with PayPal. When your balance get to over 100$, have them cut you a check. If you are conducting enough biz that you have a ton of money in your PayPal account, you're a moron for many reasons if you leave it sitting there.

PayPal's "bad behavior" is a non-issue if you manage your account with even a grain of intelligence.

Re:Good Grief (1)

|Cozmo| (20603) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531816)

That won't help you if they decided to take the money back out of your bank account without warning.

Re:Good Grief (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532746)

Please stop with the FUD.

Re:PayPal advantage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531976)

They are the best CC processor around if you are a small business or especially a small non-profit. Their rates are lower then anyone else. They have a well documented and quite popular API for integrating with your web-site. They have a virtual terminal for CC processing that does not require a dedicated locked down computer subject to random inspections for which you have to pay.
Anecdotal evidence: In my 7 years with them I had zero problems with them.

Re:PayPal advantage? (1)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532256)

To be fair, my very long-time account (since 2001) was once frozen, and I only had to call once and be on the phone for about two minutes to get it unfrozen. That said, I probably do trust Visa a smidge more than PayPal.

Re:PayPal advantage? (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532646)

I don't see how Visa will fix things up, either.

Credit card processors are pretty slimey, so much so that even Paypal looks good. It's just like cellphone carriers - they're all pretty horrible, adding competition just results in the new guy ending up as bad as the incumbents.

Honestly, it won't be long until we start hearing of the same things that Paypal does, except it's being done vy Visa instead. The only thing possibly keeping sellers honest is that payers get the seller's Visa number.

Why did it take so long? (5, Insightful)

Just_Say_Duhhh (1318603) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531034)

Paypal mapped it out years ago. The fact that Visa (and AmEx, Discover, etc) haven't been all over this idea by now makes me wonder if they're even paying attention.

I, for one, welcome competition amongst our financial overlords

Re:Why did it take so long? (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531262)

I, for one, welcome competition amongst our financial overlords...

Then use cash.. preferably unmarked bills

Re:Why did it take so long? (1)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531984)

Then use cash.. preferably unmarked bills

Um... those would be counterfeit.

Real bills have serial numbers - which can be read by machines these days, and probably are in some cash counting machines.

Re:Why did it take so long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531316)

They are scared:

https://squareup.com/ [squareup.com]

A twitter co-founder seeks to "democratize" credit card processing. They must feel threatened.

Re:Why did it take so long? (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531636)

Why would a credit card issuer feel threatened by somebody who is trying to increase the convenience and reduce the cost of accepting their credit cards? Some of the bloated incumbent processors are evidently shitting bricks; but why would Visa object to a company whose product offering should markedly increase the number of people accepting credit cards, rather than cash/checks only...

Re:Why did it take so long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35532108)

You don't think it's possible that if Square gets large adoption as a payment platform, a next logical step could be to cut out Visa and have some other form of credentials to verify the funds?

By setting up a person-to-person payment system, Square becomes less necessary and therefore the old establishment hands keep total control.

Re:Why did it take so long? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531642)

That's neat - but why would they be scared of it, exactly?

Looks like that's just a credit card scanner, made for smartphones, with app and back-end service. Their take is 2.75% (more if you enter data manually). But they don't offer their own card, which means that a good chunk of that 2.75% - say 2% - still goes to the traditional credit card companies. If anything, they should welcome this development (or copy it). I, for one, would much prefer to pay via card (though I'd prefer my Dutch PIN card over a credit card) than paying cash (exact amount) to the postal services for select packages (import duties, usually).

Unless your post is just an ad, of course. In which case - it's still cool, so spam away.

I wonder what the adoption rate of Google Checkout these days is, though.. seemed like the only reasonable competitor to PayPal, but I've never seen a Pay with Google Checkout button in my browsing along the web.

Off-topic: "It's been 1 hour, 1 minute since you last successfully posted a comment." Seriously, Slashdot? *VPNs and hits Submit*

Re:Why did it take so long? (1)

Anrego (830717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531874)

Probably too high up there on their tower of money.

Seriously.. it must get to a point where you make such obscene profit that it's not even worth your time to look into making more.

Probably Wasn't Enough Money In It (1)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532676)

When you're bringing down double digit growth due to practices with dubious moral and legal standings, a couple extra percent on transaction fees in a niche market doesn't look so great. Especially when you were probably in the loop at some point anyway. Now that people are actually being more careful about their credit and Congress is making noises about investigating their questionable practices, they feel the need to start diversifying.

Is the post so corrupt in your country... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531104)

Is the postal system so corrupt in your country that simply sending CASH to someone is dangerous? In 50+ years of sending and receiving gobs of cash in birthday cards and christmas cards, I've never had any problems.... and we're talking thousands of dollars here...

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (1)

robot256 (1635039) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531558)

I see why you posted Anonymous Coward, otherwise you might end up with hoards of vagrants opening all your mail before you get home in the evening. Some of us prefer to avoid that worry altogether.

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (2)

subanark (937286) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531560)

Its not the post office, its the people at both ends.

1. Although it is a federal offense, it is often easy to steal people's mail and thus the money simply by taking mail out of the mail box on either end.
2. Cash isn't traceable, you can't go to court and claim you payed your bills in cash unless you did it in person and got a receipt.
3. Cash needs to be processed manually, if you send cash to a business, someone has to open the mail, count the bills, store the bills, and make a note that the payment was received. People cost money to hire, and people tend to make more mistakes than computers.

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (1)

subanark (937286) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531812)

4. Cash takes time to get to the recipient, usually 2 days (The US has a lot of sparely populated land).

Now, #1 and #2 can be mostly mitigated by sending a check. Sending checks in the mail to pay for many items is a very common practice here in the US. It doesn't help #3 and #4, but it avoids the fees involved in using credit cards. Checks are much safer than cash for non-person exchange (the downside of checks is you don't know they are good until you cash them in, which is why many walk in stores don't accept them).

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (1)

Lifyre (960576) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532452)

Actually it typically resolves #3 as well. All of the information is on the check for the computer to automatically record and process it. The MOST a person would have to do is manually enter the value if the hand writing is particularly poor.

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35532124)

1 is a non-issue pretty much everywhere but the US. I put outgoing mail into a pillar box [wikipedia.org] and incoming mail is pushed through a hole (a letter-box) in my door. Mail can't easily be stolen from either end.

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531586)

Yes, it is. I think almost every kid in the USA is told growing up not to send envelopes that are obviously full of cash.

Re:Is the post so corrupt in your country... (2)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531852)

That may be fin for birthday gifts, but it obviously doesn't work for payments; systems like Visa or Paypal provide you with a proof of payment.

Anything better than Paypal (1)

HForN (1095499) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531126)

In my opinion, any competition to Paypal is a good thing. The less power Paypal holds over its users (i.e. because it is not regulated as a bank), the better it is for everyone else.

Re:Anything better than Paypal (1)

Dr_Ken (1163339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531162)

And so the best thing about PayPal is also the worst thing about it too.

Re:Anything better than Paypal (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 3 years ago | (#35531324)

You're no better off than before. It only solidifies their control over personal finance. Don't forget that VISA also blocked his account.. We give them all too much power.

newclear age offers human to human equity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531634)

no cash, or gadgets, usery fees, etc.... see you at the play-dates, georgia stone editings, photon showers etc... guaranteed to activate all of our sense(s) at once. hand in hand.

Yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35531790)

Yeah man!

Ripe for abuse (2)

creamy_red (883276) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532134)

Seems to me like this will be an open invitation for hackers since you send and receive the funds by putting your full credit card number into their website. Who wants to give someone else their CC number so they can give you money?

If you enjoy having all your purchases tracked... (2)

unil_1005 (1790334) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532170)

...this is the one for you!

Check out Hawala for a better alternative (4, Interesting)

Squiff (1658137) | more than 3 years ago | (#35532908)

The elephant in the room here is the Hawala system (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawala) quicker, far cheaper, no accounts getting suspended- as reflects it's origins as a money transfer system designed to work in a hostile environment without regulatory authorities. And it does work, has worked for centuries. The only brake is the media scare stories on 'Islamic terrorist banking'...
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