In an Australian telco first, Optus is launching Cash by Optus, a contactless payment app that allows you to use your smartphone to pay for goods and services instead of using cash or plastic debit and credit cards.
Launched in collaboration with Visa and Heritage Bank, Cash by Optus uses Near Field Communication (NFC) and Visa payWave technology that can replace cash purchases below $100, so customers can pay for small purchases like lunch, petrol and groceries using their smartphones.
Ben White, Vice President, Mobile Marketing, Optus, said, “There are already nearly one million Optus postpaid customers with compatible devices who could download this app, get the SIM and make purchases using Cash by Optus. We’re the first Australian telco to launch a mobile payments app, and because it’s compatible with many of the latest Android devices and can be linked to any Australian bank account, we’ve got a huge opportunity to bring this technology to a lot of people.”
Cash by Optus works just like a Visa Prepaid debit card. Customers can load up to $500 at any one time and make contactless purchases under $100 at any of the hundreds of thousands of retailers that accept Visa payWave. All you need is an Optus postpaid mobile account, a compatible Android smartphone – there’s currently over 20 available  – a NFC enabled SIM (Optus will send on request) and the Cash by Optus app.
Cash by Optus vs Traditional Cash
What are the benefits of using Cash by Optus instead of traditional cash?
· No need to carry heavy change in your wallet or pocket
· No need to worry about losing your cash
· No need to waste time at the checkout, just ‘wave and go’ in seconds
· No need to have an account with a specific bank
· No need to go to the ATM to withdraw small amounts of cash
“As technology and communications converge, Cash by Optus is a natural evolution for Optus. This is our first step towards launching future contactless applications in areas like public transport. Australians never leave home without their mobiles, so it makes sense to build this technology into smartphones now,” said Mr White.
Time is money
Aussies love a shortcut, whether it’s using nicknames like Dazza or Shazza, or emoticons instead of texting. Cash by Optus speeds up the transaction process and makes payments even more convenient compared to fumbling with cash and heavy change. Contactless payments are so much quicker, they’re often three times faster than paying with cash.
Australians are leading the world for contactless payments with over 64 million Visa payWave transactions in September 2014 . In fact, more than half (55%) of face-to-face Visa transactions in Australia are made using Visa payWave .
George Lawson, Head of Emerging Products and Innovation, Visa, said, “Australians are clearly choosing more convenient ways to pay. The rapid growth of contactless payments in Australia has set the right conditions to enable a mass shift to mobile payments. We’re excited to support Optus in its drive to provide a simple mobile payment experience for its customers.”
We’ve got your back
Cash by Optus uses Visa payWave technology, which uses the international EMV chip standard, and provides some of the most widely adopted cryptographic security.
Lost your phone? No need to worry. Just give Optus a call, your Cash by Optus account will be closed and you can request your balance to be returned. You can also cancel your account at any time or dispute transactions if you don’t recognise them.
Cash by Optus is issued by Heritage Bank, which is known for its expertise in prepaid cards.
Heritage is responsible for the banking aspect of Cash by Optus, drawing on its extensive experience in this area.
John Minz, CEO Heritage Bank, said, “We’re delighted to have the opportunity to partner with Optus and Visa to make the Cash by Optus facility a reality. Heritage Bank is a relatively small financial institution, but we’re already recognised for our ability to deliver really creative and effective payment solutions for our corporate partners, particularly in the area of prepaid transactions.”
“The launch of Cash by Optus now also establishes Heritage as a leader in mobile payments. Our specialist expertise in this emerging area of payments reinforces our position as an enabler of innovative new services that the customers of leading Australian companies are seeking."
Did you know?
With Cash by Optus, you can:
· Check the amount of money you have remaining in real time, with an internet connection.
· Display detailed transaction history, great for people who like to keep track of purchases for security and budgeting.
· Filter and review your transaction history by date.
· Report a fault through the app and request a call back from the support team.
· Use the app without opening it on your phone. On most phones, it works even if the battery is flat.
· Breathe easy about accidental payments – you need to hold your mobile within four centimetres of the contactless terminal.
· Not worry about obvious cash branding on your phone. There’s no sticker to let people know that the phone has the app which is great for security.
· Buy stuff online or over the phone using the virtual card, for purchases up to $250.
For more information or to register for Cash by Optus, head to www.optus.com.au/cash.
 VisaNet, September 2014
 VisaNet, September 2014