Dave Birch: The importance of contactless terminal configuration to enhance the user experience
The Cards Asia Organising Team is honoured and privileged to have one of NFC World Asia 2011 Conference speakers, Mr. Dave Birch, Director of Consult Hyperion, UK to be our 1st guest blogger! Through an interesting example of an ‘everyday life activity’, Mr. Birch stresses the importance of contactless terminal configuration to enhance the user experience.
Contactless interfaces at POS are the rails for NFC to run on, so it’s important that these interfaces spread and are accepted by consumers. The way that contactless terminals work has a big influence on the consumer response to them, so it’s frustrating that merchants in the UK seem to have their contactless terminals configured in the most annoying way possible! Typically, it goes something like this…
• Consumer goes to counter in Pret a Manager and presents a delicious bottle of some form of fruit juice.
• The retail assistant says: "That’ll be £1.60 please"
• Consumer taps contactless card against dead contactless reader. Nothing happens.
• Consumer then has to ask: Can I pay using contactless?
• The retail assistant presses a button somewhere on their till. After about 20 seconds, the terminal lights up and displays "£1.60".
• Now the consumer can pay and go.
It would make far more sense to make contactless payment the default option for payment and have the terminal light up automatically. If the consumer decides to pay with cash then the assistant has to press a button to open the cash register anyway, so it would make sense to have that same button turn the contactless reader off. By doing it this way round, the user experience is transformed.
• Consumer presents a delicious bottle of some form of fruit juice.
• The retail assistant says: "That’ll be £1.60 please".
• Consumer taps and goes.
Now, of course, with a card the consumer still has to wait for a paper receipt to be printed out, but with a phone the receipt can be sent back across the NFC interface, saving paper as well as time!
David G.W. Birch is a Director of Consult Hyperion, the IT management consultancy that specialises in electronic transactions, where he provides specialist consultancy support to clients around the world. Before helping to found Consult Hyperion in 1986, he spent several years working as a consultant in Europe, the Far East and North America. He graduated from the University of Southampton with a B.Sc (Hons.) in Physics. For more information about Consult Hyperion, please visit http://www.chyp.com/.
Mr. Birch will be the workshop leader at NFC World Asia 2011’s Post Conference Workshop on 15 April 2011. Register as a delegate for the workshop to learn more about NFC Business Models and how you can turn NFC into a rewarding business! Register early to enjoy early bird rates!