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Welcome to the News View for "Micropayments".

Here, on these archive pages, you'll find all of the articles on Payments News for Micropayments listed in date sequence beginning with the most recent article at the top of the page.

Click here for a complete listing of what's available in the Payments News Archive - organized by both posting date and subject category.

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August 19, 2013

Headline News from - August 19, 2013

On the web:

On the wires:

Updates from Glenbrook:

Note: Headline News is compiled by Glenbrook Partners. Throughout the day, as we spot interesting developments, this post is updated. Find something interesting to share? Tell us about it:!

August 18, 2013

Aggregation and Aggravation - Micropayments 2013

PaymentsViews logo 140pxOver on our blog in a post titled Aggregation and Aggravation - Micropayments 2013, Glenbrook's Russ Jones laments the lack of a solution to micropayments - saying it's a problem that's never been solved.

Why do micropayments endure as such a challenge in payments? The problem has been the same for many years – the challenge of absorbing fixed payments costs on a small value item. In interchange terms (1.9% plus $0.10), it’s not the 1.9% that’s the problem, its the $0.10.

Russ concludes by noting that "Twenty years into the Internet revolution, the micropayment challenge remains very real for sellers that are dealing in low-cost goods and services. The challenge (or perhaps the opportunity?) will likely increase as more and more of the economy shifts from physical goods to digital goods."

March 31, 2010

Cardis Introduces Low Value Payment Solution Based on Aggregation

Cardis Enterprises International has announced the European introduction of a low value payment solution with "a unique business model that provides a platform to drive cash replacement of everyday small payments."

Cardis says that its solution "offers a paradigm shift to the payment cards business model by introducing end-to-end transaction aggregation - an industry first. This allows for reduction of the per transaction cost by enabling many individual low-value payment transactions to be aggregated into a single (higher value) debit card transaction, without the need for per transaction reconciliation (or shadow accounting), posting or processing at any point in the value chain." READ MORE »

April 21, 2009

PlaySpan Acquires Spare Change

PlaySpan has announced an agreement to acquire Spare Change - calling it "the first and largest micropayments solution on social networks whose platform enables buyers and sellers to transact safely, easily and inexpensively." READ MORE »

February 06, 2009

Time: How to Save Your Newspaper (It's Micropayments!)

Walter Isaacson, former managing editor of TIME, president and CEO of the Aspen Institute, writes this week's Time Magazine cover story titled "How to Save Your Newspaper". His article is all about how save your newspaper from what appears to be inevitable financial ruin. Isaacson's answer: micropayments.

The key to attracting online revenue, I think, is to come up with an iTunes-easy method of micropayment. We need something like digital coins or an E-ZPass digital wallet — a one-click system with a really simple interface that will permit impulse purchases of a newspaper, magazine, article, blog or video for a penny, nickel, dime or whatever the creator chooses to charge.

He's aware the earlier efforts (citing Flooz, Beenz, CyberCash, Bitpass, Peppercoin and DigiCash!) - but feels the times have changed. Along the way, he chastises PayPal for being too expensive for true micropayments and mentions Spare Change, Bee-Tokens, Tipjoy, and TwitPay.

November 25, 2008

PlaySpan Announces $16.8 Million in Series B Funding

PlaySpan, a provider of digital goods micro-transaction and payment solutions, has announced $16.8M in Series B investment from Easton Capital Group, Menlo Ventures, Novel TMT Ventures, STIC and other undisclosed investors. This new capital brings the company's total funding to $24M. The new funding will be used to expand into Europe and Asia and to grow PlaySpan's global publisher and user-base. READ MORE »

November 19, 2008

A Look at Twitpay

On Web Worker Daily, Mike Gunderloy takes a look at Twitpay, described as "a simple way to send payments via Twitter." A Twitpay account is funded via PayPal in amounts between $10 and $49.99. Twitpay's FAQ page says that the service was created by a team at the Atlanta Startup Weekend.

June 12, 2008

Javien's Supports New Visa Micropayment Guidelines

Javien has announced that Javien Micropay now helps merchants meet Visa’s new guidelines for online micropayment transactions of Visa credit, debit or prepaid cards. Additionally, Javien says Micropay provides an auditable, provable method of managing online micropayment aggregations that conforms to Visa’s new rules. READ MORE »

February 28, 2008

Free vs. Cheap - Why Micropayments Failed

In an article titled 'Free! Why $0.00 Is the Future of Business', Chris Anderson writes for Wired Magazine about how more and more things are trending toward free. Here's his view about why micropayments failed: 'The huge psychological gap between 'almost zero' and 'zero' is why micropayments failed. It's why Google doesn't show up on your credit card. It's why modern Web companies don't charge their users anything. And it's why Yahoo gives away disk drive space. The question of infinite storage was not if but when. The winners made their stuff free first.'

January 24, 2008

A Look at Noca

TechCrunch's Mark Hendrickson writes about Noca, a Redwood City, CA-based startup that "is attempting to virtually eliminate transaction fees by bypassing the credit card companies altogether with its own online payment service." Noca's mission statement says it is "building a new online payment system to provide significantly reduced transaction processing rates for online shopping enabling efficient processing of micro-transactions for digital goods."

August 27, 2007

Another Look at Micropayments

In an article titled 'In Online World, Pocket Change Is Not Easily Spent", Dan Mitchell writes for the New York Times about micropayments - noting that successful approaches seem to based upon aggregation of transactions, helping to reduce the payment system costs by consolidating multiple small purchases into a single, larger purchase amount transaction. Earlier efforts that involved prepaid-like characteristics (with consumers pre-funding an account) have failed.

June 17, 2007

Who Needs Pocket Change When You’ve Got Plastic?

Elizabeth Olson writes for the New York Times about the increasing use of payment cards for small ticket purchases. She writes "more consumers — especially younger ones — are shunning cash and paper checks almost entirely."

June 12, 2007

Virtual Goods Summit 2007 - Stanford, June 22, 2007

Charles Hudson writes: "I'm organizing a one day conference on virtual goods and virtual economies at Stanford this summer and I thought your readers might have an interest in attending the event - we have a few sessions focused on payments/economics and the role that real world payment vehicles could play in the development of this space." Details here on the Virtual Goods Summit 2007.

May 10, 2007

Solving the Micropayment Problem, Online and at the Point of Sale

Mercator Advisory Group has announced its latest report, Solving the Micropayment Problem, Online and at the Point of Sale, that reviews "both the history and challenges of electronic micropayments and examines how the existing rails have evolved to address under $5 electronic payments at both the point of sale and for online transactions."


April 16, 2007

Relationships Built Upon Everyday, Small Value Payments

TowerGroup has issued a research note titled "Micropayments: Turning Nickels and Dimes into Profits" that "illustrates how card use for micropayments reinforces and can deepen issuers' relationships with their customers, thereby indirectly enhancing profitability. Customer retention is directly linked to product usage. Ideally, frequent use of cards for small everyday transactions will lead consumers to use the cards for larger and more profitable transactions."

January 28, 2007

Davos: Microsoft Online Payment System

CNN is carrying a Dow Jones Newswire story this morning reporting from Davos on a discussion with Bill Gates about Microsoft developing on an online payment system that will be cheaper than credit card transactions.

January 19, 2007

Bitpass Is Toast

Bitpass has begun notifying its merchant and consumer customers via email that "due to circumstances beyond our control, we are discontinuing our operations. We have partnered with Digital River to provide operational support during the period prior to shut down. As of today, January 19, 2007, all Bitpass Buyers with US dollar denominated accounts are being notified that they will have seven (7) days to spend any amounts that currently exist in their Bitpass Account." Alas, Clay Shirky was right. Bitpass, RIP.

January 03, 2007

ClickandBuy Signs Digital Music Stores

ClickandBuy has announced that "three independent online music stores have selected its international digital payments platform for its hosted digital commerce system and its ability to provide different types of payment methods, including yearly subscriptions, micropayments or single downloads of songs."


November 15, 2006

A Store That Only Accepts "Gift Cards"

On the Apple Matters blog, James Stoup writes about the new Microsoft Zune Marketplace - where you can't just buy songs with a credit card. Instead, you first have to buy Microsoft Points - using your credit card. Then, you can use the Points stored in your account to buy music. He says "in effect, Microsoft has created a store that only accepts gift cards as the valid method of payments."

October 05, 2006

4th Annual Micro and Small Payments Conference

Peppercoin has announced that the 4th Annual Micro and Small Payments Conference will be held November 28 at New York City's Marriott Financial Center. The conference's theme is "Transforming Transactions" and growing the small payments markets. Niki Manby, senior vice president of product innovation at Visa USA, and Robert Carr, chairman and CEO of Heartland Payment Systems, will keynote.


A Look At Microsoft Points

Carl Howe blogs for Seeking Alpha about the "new Microsoft cash system" called Microsoft Points originally rolled out with the Xbox Live Marketplace and to be used for making online music purchases for Microsoft's new Zune music player.

September 28, 2006

Visa USA Updates Progress On Small Ticket Payments

Visa USA has announced that leading U.S. merchants continue to adopt the Visa No Signature Required Program, which waives the signature requirement for qualifying Visa transactions less than $25 across 17 merchant categories using existing magnetic stripe POS card acceptance terminals. The program, launched in April 2006, is designed to accelerate Visa acceptance and card usage at traditionally cash-intensive merchants. According to Visa, 7-Eleven, Inc., Clearview Cinemas, Dairy Queen, Domino’s Pizza, and Sonic Drive-In are among the newest merchants now participating in the program. Visa estimates indicate that by the end of 2006 as much as 27 percent of all Visa transactions may qualify for Visa's No Signature Required Program.


September 11, 2006

Duncan Solutions, Peppercoin Form Strategic Partnership

Duncan Solutions and Peppercoin have announced a strategic partnership to "offer innovative, integrated solutions that grow parking revenues by increasing the profitability of credit and debit card transactions and deliver greater conveniences to motorists." The companies, who already work together in a number of cities, including Las Vegas and Oklahoma City, are enhancing their relationship with additional technology integration and coordinated sales efforts.


August 11, 2006

T-Online Venture Fund Invests In Click&Buy

T-Online Venture Fund has announced it has made a 10% investment in Zug, Switzerland-based FIRSTGATE Holding AG, owner of Click&Buy.


July 13, 2006

Webinar: Hot Topics in Small Payments

Executives from Chase, Peppercoin, TYS, and Visa plan to hold a Small Payments Webinar on July 19th. Moderated by Jeff Green of Card & Payments Magazine, the session will cover contactless payments, card acceptance in the everyday spending market, and emerging loyalty requirements. Jeff Gordan, an Arby's Roast Beef franchise operator, will provide the merchant perspective. Peppercoin will also be unveiling new Ipsos-Insight data on the growth and obstacles facing the contactless payments adoption, as well as which markets have the greatest potential.

June 27, 2006

BayPay Meeting: Thursday, June 29 - Small/Micro Payments

Are you a payments professional living in the San Francisco Bay Area? The next meeting of BayPay, the payments professionals' networking group for the San Francisco area is being held this Thursday, June 29, beginning at 6 PM in Mountain View. This meeting's topic is small/micro payments - speakers are Mark Friedman, CEO of Peppercoin and Doug Knopper, CEO of Bitpass. There's ample time alloted at each meeting for networking with other local payments professionals. If you're not already a BayPay member and are interested in attending this Thursday's meeting, please contact us for more information and details about meeting location, etc.

June 19, 2006

Micropayments: The Final Frontier For Consumer Payments

James C. McGrath of the Payments Cards Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia has published a new discussion paper titled "Micropayments: The Final Frontier For Consumer Payments" (pdf). The paper concludes that,"despite some structural limitations, the existing payment card infrastructure and related products are likely to be the primary vehicles for electronifying micropayments in the U.S. in coming years."


June 12, 2006

Peppercoin's Small Payments Loyalty Platform

Peppercoin has announced a loyalty program for small payments both online and at the physical point-of-sale. Peppercoin says its new program is "the first to allow merchants to attract and retain customers buying small dollar-value items and services -- such as a cup of coffee or a music file download -- without requiring a separate pre-enrollment process or additional card."


May 23, 2006

BitPass Inks Deal With Broadcast Giant Entercom

BitPass has announced an agreement with Entercom, one of the five largest radio broadcasting companies in the US, to enable subscription access to online broadcast content.


January 29, 2006

TextPayMe - The Real Story

TextPayMeOver on the TextPayMe blog, the founders share why they really started this new mobile payments company:

"We wanted to split dinnertime bills easily and fairly."

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