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It’s 2020, which makes it the perfect time to reflect on the past decade of payments — and to predict what the future holds. We’ve come a long way over the past ten years, witnessing the rise of e-commerce to m-commerce and undergoing a vast transformation away from analog into the digital world.

Where We’ve Been…

To evaluate the past ten years, it’s helpful to rewind to a few years prior to 2010. Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007, paving the way for the App Store one year later. The iPhone and apps both shifted the trajectory of ecommerce and every touchpoint along the way. They altered the way people shopped, paid, banked and received payments.

As payments evolved, the bad guys did too. Just several years before the release of the iPhone, credit card industry leaders collaborated to develop a set of security standards. Comprised of American Express, Discover Financial Services, JCB International, Mastercard and Visa, the PCI released PCI DSS 1.0 in December 2004 to keep payment fraud at bay.

Since then, we’ve seen various iterations of the PCI DSS, bringing us to PCI DSS 3.2.1. Other security measures have been introduced as well, including PCI Validated Point-to-Point Encryption (P2PE). This is becoming a standard way for merchants to reduce PCI scope, effectively removing POS, computers, networks and supporting infrastructure from certain PCI requirements.

In 2020, we are still fighting a wide array of fraudsters and facing an ongoing epidemic of data breaches. We are also continuing to develop innovative ways for entities to transact in a fast, convenient and secure manner. We certainly haven’t outgrown app culture; in December of last year, the App Store topped 100 million monthly active users and customers spent more than $1.4 billion in the App Store between Christmas and New Year.

But that doesn’t mean things aren’t continuing to change.

Where We’re Going

While smartphones lead the massive shift in payments, we’re in the midst of a much bigger transformation that will unfold as we move into the next decade. We’ll likely see movement from the app economy into one driven by the Internet of Things (IoT), whereby connected devices and environments will enable new ways to transact.

As IoT grows — the number of connected devices will top 38.5 billion this year — nearly anything with an internet connection will be able to facilitate a transaction. This opens up endless possibilities for commerce between people, businesses and machines. The intermediaries of today will give way to new ones, enabled by new networks and models. The payments landscape will undergo more drastic changes, even if we can’t necessarily foresee exactly how that will play out today. While we can’t be 100% certain of what the future of payments holds, we’re excited to partner with you on the path of evolving solutions.

Ready to start the next decade in payments on the right foot? Contact our team of payments experts for your free consultation.

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