Imagine this, you’re riding on a bus and you see a poster on the seat back in front of you advertising a game. The game looks interesting and you decide you want to purchase it, you pull out your phone, tap the NFC enabled sticker on the poster and the game is purchased with credit from your mobile phone bill. That’s the concept of ‘Tapit and Buy’ a new service announced at MWC, born from a partnership between Australian company Tapit and digital security company Gemalto.
The concept essentially allows people to use their smartphone to interact with a contactless medium – NFC, QR Code or even a Beacon – to be immediately taken to an ecommerce site where they can purchase digital goods – Music, eBooks, Games or any sort of digital content and have the cost come off their monthly post-paid carrier bill, or their pre-paid credit.
Tapit Founder Andrew Davis said of the new deal:
Tapit and Buy gives brands access to incremental revenue opportunities through their product packaging orpoint of sale materials, directly associating sales with marketing. Gemalto’s Netsize operator billing technology ensures that payment is secure, seamless and transparent for end users, while Tapit’s platform ensures brands have full control and visibility of how their physical assets are performing in the field.
The service has the potential to roll out fairly widely, but for now the system will be rolled out in the UK initially, with the service looking to focus on sales under the £30 mark. The smaller transaction sizes will allow anyone from small to large-scale businesses to forge direct relationships with their customers.
It would be great to see this system rollout here in Australia, where the concept of using NFC based payments is already a way of life. We’ll await further developments on Tapit and Buy internationally but for now, we’ll monitor how it goes in the UK.