This is a book about money as a medium of exchange—in the past, in the present, but particularly in the future. What forms has money taken over the years? Moreover, how have those means of payment changed in recent years, and how will they develop in the future? And what (if anything) should policymakers do to facilitate those changes, or at least allow them to develop and mature? Brookings economists Robert E. Litan and Martin Neil Baily and a distinguished group of experts dissect these issues and peer into the future of consumer payments.
The landscape of the consumer payments industry will be shaped at least in part by public policies. Historically, governments have had monopolies on the manufacture of money. Any form of payment clearly requires trust on the part of both the seller and the buyer, and the government must establish and enforce laws to secure this relationship. More controversial is the issue of whether, and to what extent, government is also needed to protect the market in private sector payments systems.
Why do these issues matter? The payments industry is a large and important sector of developed economies. In the United States, private-sector payments providers generate approximately $280 billion a year in revenue, while the government invests substantial resources into making money (minting coins and printing bills) or moving it (via checks and various electronic transfers). And the way we pay for things influences our purchases—what we spend money on, how much we spend, and where we spend it. Thus the future of consumer payments is intertwined with the health of national economies.
Contributors: Martin Neil Baily (Brookings), Thomas P. Brown (O'Melveny & Myers), Kenneth Chenault (American Express Company), Vijay D'Silva (McKinsey and Company), Nicholas Economides (New York University), David S. Evans (Market Platform Dynamics), Robert E. Litan (Brookings and Kaufmann Foundation), Drazen Prelec (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Richard Schmalensee (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Consumers want mobile transactions to be as fast and reliable as cash or bank cards. This book shows designers, developers, and product managers—from startups to financial institutions—how to design mobile payments that not only safeguard identity and financial data, but also provide value-added features that exceed customer expectations.Learn about the major mobile payment frameworks: NFC, cloud, and closed loopExamine the pros and cons of Google Wallet, Isis, Square, PayPal, and other payment appsProvide walkthroughs, demos, and easy registration to quickly gain a new user’s trustDesign efficient point-of-sale interactions, using NFC, QR, barcodes, or geolocationAdd peripheral services such as points, coupons and offers, and money management
This book is not another tired exhortation to take advantage of technology to improve corporate performance. One cannot utilize technology to its full potential without also overhauling the rigid, hierarchical business model that was designed for the command-and-control corporate environment of the industrial era. Tsai takes a comprehensive view of everything that needs to be done in order to make the most of emerging technologies. The new information economy calls for companies that foster strategic collaboration through a more horizontal organizational structure. A more synchronized supply chain yields better customer service, higher quality, faster delivery, and lower inventory. In the customer-centric environment, a new value proposition is essential. Business processes must be fast, focused, flexible, responsive, and nimble. With the knowledge gained from this book, one should be able to face the future with an ability and capacity to discern technology policies and make decisions concerning strategic positioning and competitive business strategy.