ING Trials Ultrade-wideband Technology For Peer-to-peer Payments

ING continues to explore new opportunities in the payments space. The focus has now shifted to peer-to-peer transactions through an app relying on ultra-wideband technology. It is an intriguing take on peer-to-peer payments, although it remains to be seen if consumers will embrace the idea.

ING Tries Something Different

Peer-to-peer transactions are an essential part of global payments. People want to pay the other person/party directly without having to worry about intermediaries and compatibility. ING acknowledges there is untapped potential in this segment. Together with NXP Semiconductors and Samsung, ING will launch the Near app.

What makes Near intriguing is its use of ultra-wideband technology. With the help of radio waves, the app can lock onto an object, figure out its location, and communicate with it. Essentially, one can point their phone at another person’s phone to transfer money. It removes the need foar phone numbers, bank details, or email addresses. Instead, everything occurs device-to-device, streamlining the whole experience. 

ING Factory’s Thijs Janssen adds:

“Consumers no longer need to share personal details, which makes mobile payments even more swift and easy. In addition, UWB’s precision location capabilities ensure that the payment is safely transferred to the right person.”

There are some caveats to this approach, though. First, both parties must have the ING and Near apps on their phones or tablets. Second, ultra-wideband technology is limited to a select few devices. ING will rely on Samsung Galaxy devices with UWB support for the trial. Third, it does not appear there will be a large-scale rollout anytime soon, but it creates an exciting future precedent.