KBC invites 1000 customers to test wearable payments

KBC invites 1000 customers to test wearable payments

KBC Bank in Belgium is jumping on the wearable payments bandwagon, inviting 1000 customers to try out contactless payments using a variety of accessories.

The bank is running roadshows in Ghent, Antwerp and Leuven, where customers will be able to pick from a number of fashion accessories, including a ring, watch, bracelet and key ring, each with an embedded contactless chip.

Users can wave their chosen wearable at high street eftpos machines and make tap-and-go payments up to a limit of EUR23. Lost chips can be switched off through an accompanying mobile app.

The trial will run for over a year, with customers providing feedback on their experiences and kept informed of progress through a regular newsletter.

KBC is seeing a steady growth in the number of tap-and-go payments made in Belgium, which quadrupled between September 2017 and September 2018 in a market where over 90% of payment terminals are enabled for contactless.

Last month, the bank rolled out its first alternative to payment cards by adding support for Garmin watch payments.

Karin Van Hoecke, KBC’s general manager for digital transformation: "This trial is all about personal banking. Contactless payments by wearable is an innovative way to pay that we’d like to explore with our customers. How do they experience it? How do they feel about being able to pay for smaller purchases in shops or lunch in a restaurant with their ring, bracelet or key ring? We see wearables as another way to pay, rather than a replacement for other existing payment methods. Our customers will ultimately decide which method they prefer from the broad and most user-friendly choice we want to give them."
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Comments: (2)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 08 November, 2018, 10:01Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Seems to miss the advantage of having so much in one smartphone.

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 08 November, 2018, 14:52Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes @stephen: KBC is perhaps the most digital of traditional banks in Belgium but they can’t escape the same mentality that drove the incumbent TelCo to avoid selling iPhones for their most profitable 5 years. They simply are eco-systems averse.
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