In recent days Mercado Pago and Rappi Pay launched the QR payment option using its app, it a very good news to the payment system in México where the QR is a new option to access online payments and decrease the use of cash.

At the moment there are 3 types of networks in México to access online payments:  The cards network (credit and debit cards) provided by visa, mastercard, amex and the domestic network where the payment is processed using a POS from a bank or mPOS from an aggregator, the second is the Interbank Electronic Payment System (SPEI) where the users can process the payment using an online banking or an mobile banking and the third option are some digital wallets with its own network like Paypal or Mercado Pago where the payment is processed using the site or an app.

The QR payments can run using this three types of networks, at the moment the QR from Rappi and Mercado Pago are only using the cards network and its own network. The QR from the Central Bank that is scheduled for Q1 2019 (CoDi) will be based on SPEI (ACH).

QR Rappi Pay and Mercado Pago experience

In general the UX is the same from both options, the cashier shows a printed QR, using the app you need to select pay with QR, then read the code and enter the amount. In both cases I was in a restaurant where it is common to get a tip so you have the option to add it in the total amount or give it separately to the waiter, in terms of conciliation and UX it will be nice to get a tip option, similar to Uber, that today does not exist.

In both cases you can use card on file or account money. When I tried to pay using Rappi Pay I selected the digital credit card from my bank and the payment was declined, then I entered my debit card and also it was declined so I was not able to finish the payment using the QR. When I used the Mercado Pago QR I selected card on file using my digital credit card then the CVV was required to finish the payment and because I do not know it I had to open the app from the bank to get my CVV and return to Mercado Pago app to enter the CVV, finally the payment was processed. I think that a proper UX experience can be paying only reading the QR and select the payment method or give the option to the user to set a main payment method like Amazon.

Another considerations for QR payments

In terms of cost processing nowadays the cards network charge the discount rate that is around 2% that in general is covered by the business, by using balance within digital wallets the cost can be 0%, here the challenge is the process to top up money with no cost because today using SPEI some banks charge around 0.23 USD, considering an average deposit of 20 USD it is 1.15% fee. What can be a game changer is the QR payment based on SPEI directly from a bank account to another bank account with no cost.

There are some discussions regarding the standards of the QR and the interoperability, I think in México in the next few years there will be no common standard and interoperability, each participant will ensure that the money stays in its own network.

2019 will be the year where we can confirm if QR payments can be adopted by the users and establish as a new payment option.