Credit card still king of payments, as “transactional flexibility” prevails

As technology continues to revolutionise the payment landscape, visions of a cardless future have been rebuffed and replaced with “transactional flexibility”, argues Himanshu Sareen.

Writing for Tech Crunch, Sareen, CEO of Icreon Tech argues that while the humble credit card has lost “whatever futuristic lustre it may have once had”, it still plays a part in the future of payments as we shift towards “transactional flexibility”.

While mobile is catalysing a seismic shift in payments with tools such as Uber and Snapchat revolutionising the way we spend, “they’re only part of the bigger picture”.

Sareen highlights that while he cannot undermine the significance of mobile payments, the truth is that people have wrongly hailed new tools such as Apple Pay as catalysts “for a digital payments revolution” when really, these changes are occurring on a macro level, he suggests.

Sareen argues that the decline of traditional payments paired with the rise of mobile, point toward one overarching result: The gradual downfall of “transactional uniformity.”

“In actuality, the shift from transactional uniformity to transactional modularity will involve a lot of smaller-scale changes that will eventually add up to a more diverse payment landscape. We’ll begin to see payment itself as a flexible tool, not limited to any one place or platform.”

Uber for travel, PayPal for friends, a Starbucks app for coffee: the credit card will maintain its place alongside a variety of methods as technology continues to fill in the voids, creating an ever more convenient landscape.

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