My thoughts on QR Codes: Past Present and Future with the incomparable Theodora Lau!
This was so much fun because I got to work with my friend Theodra Lau, author of “Beyond Good.” She gets that there is far more to QR codes than meets the eye! This podcast was brought to you by the true masters of QR codes Alipay and the AntKast podcast!
Timestamp: (from video version)
🔹 1:44 Tell me about yourself.
“I watched China go Cashless firsthand!” It inspired me to write “Cashless.”
🔹 4:10 What is so special about QR codes?
QR is old technology that was actually considered dead! It is useful because it creates a bridge from the physical to the digital world.
🔹 7:00 The transition to QR codes how did it go?
2014 was the year Apple Pay, WeChat and Alipay all launched! By 2017 all of China had gone “cashless” because it was so convenient. QR codes also eliminated the need for a POS device!
🔹 09:38 Theo: “I have to laugh because I wrote a check this morning!” 🤣
🔹 10:06 Global adoption of QR.
All of Asia is QR friendly and now QR has migrated to PIX in Brazil and Mercado Libre in Latin America. It’s gone global! Even Metapay is using QR codes.
🔹 12:57 Why now for EU QR payment standardization?
Because we have a digital euro coming in about 5 years and a standardized QR code system will make for a unified EU digital payment system. One QR code and you can pick how you want to pay! This is where Alipay+ is taking the world now!
READ: “Standardizing QR Payments in Europe” Copenhagen Economics (https://bit.ly/3DS6fPp)
🔹 16:54 How can QR code be an enabler of financial inclusion?
QR codes are a perfect way to bring more vulnerable people into a digital payment world that they would be excluded from in the West! Apple Pay was “pay to play” and did not foster inclusion! Yes that’s true.
🔹 20:45 NFC vs QR codes?
The west lives in a proximity payment world, meaning you need to be close. QR codes can be used from much further away and without electricity. They are elegant!
🔹 24:40 What role will QR play in embedded finance?
The real question is what can’t you do with a QR? They are ubiquitous in China. So embedded finance? Well, where do you want to put your QR code? There is no limit! Alipay invented embedded finance, but the West will have to wait.
🔹 28:20 Theo’s example of airlines accepting QR payments on planes.
🔹 28:50 The future of payments?
The future of QR payments is unified QR code payment systems as the gov’t of Singapore has done. There is also Alipay+ which is bringing cross-border QR payment to all of Asia and even Europe! It sounds like science fiction but it’s happening now. It’s a beautiful future!
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