Canadian Vending

Features Payment Technology
Calgary entrepreneur launches mobile service at NAMA


September 4, 2014
By Canadian Vending

Topics

Sept. 4, 2014, Calgary – Electronic payment startup PayLab
premiered a cashless payment system that does not require mag stripe readers,
bluetooth technology or NFC hardware at the NAMA show this April.

Sept. 4, 2014, Calgary – Electronic payment startup PayLab
premiered a cashless payment system that does not require mag stripe readers,
bluetooth technology or NFC hardware at the NAMA show this April.

This spring, PayLab wrapped
up a 10-month project with Southern Alberta Institute of Technology that saw
them research several technologies and build prototype units, which were used
to demonstrate the technology at NAMA in Chicago.

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PayLab’s service uses
internal hardware and location services on the user’s smartphone and couples it
with data captured via cameras and sensors embedded in its hardware to create a
frictionless, secure vend transaction
 

The PayLab app, which may be
downloaded to iOS and Android platforms, contains an embedded payment
mechanism. Users can reload value, track purchase history and manage a family
account by waving their phone in front of the embedded point-of-sale device to
activate sensors and servers.
 

“Our device is constantly
learning about both the consumer and the location and translating that data
into actionable intelligence,” said a company press release.

“There were essentially two
key catalysts that spurred the idea,” Mike Gron, CEO and co-founder of PayLab,
told Canadian Vending. First were the changes made to credit
card merchant fees that have adversely affected small-ticket retailers,
including vending operators. Those changes made several existing solutions,
including mag stripe readers, less cost effective or completely unfeasible for
many operators. Given that, the company felt there was a great opportunity to
provide an option that was less dependent on the credit card companies and
could offer operators an opportunity to jump ahead of the curve in terms of
cashless acceptance.

“The second factor was
Starbucks’ incredible success with their own mobile wallet. They now do about a
quarter of all sales through their app. 
They avoided many of the issues with merchant fees by allowing consumers
to place a balance on their mobile account, which they can then use over time.
This limits the effect of increased merchant fees and captures the consumer.” 

The company is working with a
number of partners to trial its first release late in 2014.