PayPal president: Mobile revolution is consumer-driven, technology-enabled

PayPal president: Mobile revolution is consumer-driven, technology-enabled

Summary: PayPal's president reminds mobile industry partners to listen to their customers about what they want.


SAN FRANCISCO -- The 2012 Open Mobile Summit just kicked off on Wednesday morning, and in less than a few hours, there is already a stirring debate over what should be the focus for mobile technology going forward.

See also: ARM CEO: Future of mobile technology rests on services more than devices

So far, the consensus seems to be that the underlying mobile technology isn't really the focal point. PayPal president David Marcus suggested in his morning keynote that the end users are the primary driving force.

"It's not about mobile. It's not about technology. It's about people," said Marcus, asserting that "this revolution is consumer-driven and technology-enabled."

In regards to mobile payments, this is an area that might be still very confusing for both consumers and the providers themselves as there are still a lot of different strategies but no clear winner in sight.

Marcus acknowledged that near-field communications (NFC) has gotten a lot of attention in the last couple of years, but he argued that those companies are changing their strategies to what PayPal has been already doing. Adding that "customers didn't say it's really hard to swipe a card," Marcus hinted that the key might be a less-is-more approach.

"What customers are saying is that they want their money to be simple," Marcus said. "They don't want complicated interfaces. They don't want to deal with complexity in their lives."

The takeaway from this lecture is that mobile has really influenced consumers to develop the attitude of thinking they should be able to access anything, anywhere, anytime -- and this heavily applies for the commerce industry.

For example, citing that approximately 25 percent of PayPal's transaction volume crosses international borders, Marcus remarked that consumers are shopping within "a global market," adding that they don't care where they buy from -- as long as it is on their own terms.

Marcus reflected that consumers do want to make their money "work harder," describing that includes ensuring the right coupons find the customers (i.e. based on location, etc.) and self-pay point-of-sale kiosks.

"It's not going to be e-commerce or m-commerce. It's just commerce," Marcus concluded. "You need to listen to what your customers are telling you."

Topics: Mobility, Apps, Smartphones, Tablets

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  • U got 2 B kiddin!

    Marcus concluded. "You need to listen to what your customers are telling you."

    BALONEY! Coming from a greedy corporate head with draconian make-up rules who refuse to follow normal banking rules. I say baloney! He should be showered with eggs, not ears!
  • I stopped using Paypal

    PayPal has some short-sighted policies which make it useless to folks concerned about bank account security. For example, I purchase A LOT online. I used Paypal which was linked to my credit card, which has fraud protection and liability limits built-in. They continuously bugged me to give them my bank account information, which doesn't have fraudulent withdrawal protection. I refused to add my bank account information and quickly hit their little-publicized limit on total transaction value. So, they cut me off until I add my bank account information. That's never going to happen, so the idiots lost ALL future revenue from my massive online purchases. I just went back to buying using my credit card. PayPal loses.

    I say all of this to point out that the opinion of morons who turn down free additional income has little relevance to me. Who cares what Paypal thinks?