Inside CommBank's Kaching: photos

Inside CommBank's Kaching: photos

Summary: The Commonwealth Bank has made a to-do list as long as its proverbial arm for the future of its NFC-enabled, pay-anyone app Kaching!, which includes support for virtual currency, like Facebook Credits, coupons, deals and an eventual partnership with Google for its Wallet product. Take a look inside the first iteration of Kaching! and our chat with CommBank chief marketing officer, Andy Lark.


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  • You can choose from a list of your Facebook friends to pay and even post on their wall once your payment is processed. A little creepy, but we guess that's the modus operandi of the social network.

    Lark said that Facebook has been an incredible partner to work with throughout the entire process, and saw the relationship progressing into virtual currency territory via the Kaching! app.

    "We're working hard with Facebook on [integrating Facebook Credits], and we hope to do interesting things there. I think there are hundreds of applications that get spawned when you start doing that. There are merchants who can offer coupons and deals inside Facebook, [as well as] Living Social, Twitter.

    "We have this long list of people we want to go and enable next. We're really excited about the opportunity, but we had to start somewhere and we couldn't bite everything off at once," Lark said.

  • Users can also pay bills via BPAY on the new Kaching! app.

    Lark said that while the Kaching! app is also being developed from the ground up for Android (rather than an iOS app ported across), the bank has no plans to develop an NFC-capable case for the Android contingent.

    He did say, however, that the Commonwealth Bank had met with Google, who indicated a native NFC chip to be used by the bank would be ready within 12 months, at which time Lark hopes to have a partnership on the way for Google's Wallet product.

    "We hope [to partner with Google Wallet]. We were up in Silicon Valley last week talking to Google," Lark said, adding that "there's a lot of hype around Google Wallet, but it really does depend heavily on the NFC element in the device. The reality is that they're testing that in the US now in a limited way, and testing in one or two European markets in a very limited way. Where Australia will sit on their test list, who knows?"

    "The critical mythology in the market today is that all these Android phones in the market today have NFC chips in them. They actually have 'dumb' chips in them, and Google, based on what we've seen so far, doesn't look like they'll be in the market for at least 12 months with an NFC-enabled phone.

    "It's not enough to have the chip in it; you have to have it enabled, and the 'secure element' has to be available to us as an institution so we can turn it on for you," he said.

  • The app also uses the iPhone's GPS facilities to locate branches and ATMs close by if you need to get your hands on some good, old-fashioned cash money.

Topics: Android, Apple, Banking, Google, iPhone, Social Enterprise

Luke Hopewell

About Luke Hopewell

A fresh recruit onto the tech journalism battlefield, Luke Hopewell is eager to see some action. After a tour of duty in the belly of the Telstra beast, he is keen to report big stories on the enterprise beat. Drawing on past experience in radio, print and magazine, he plans to ask all the tough questions you want answered.

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