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Vodacom, Mastercard debut digital payments app

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Mark Elliott, division president for Southern Africa at Mastercard.
Mark Elliott, division president for Southern Africa at Mastercard.

Mobile operator Vodacom has joined forces with Mastercard to launch VodaPay Masterpass.

The new digital payment solution enables Vodacom customers to load bank card details into a digital wallet that can be downloaded as an app on a smartphone.

According to a statement, once details have been loaded, customers can use the app to transact and make payments without needing to insert their details every time to make a purchase.

Some of the transactions include buying prepaid data, airtime and SMS or voice bundles, as well as paying a DStv account, utility bill or a traffic fine. Furthermore, customers will not be charged for transactions made via the app, reads the statement.

“The positive uptake of Masterpass by retailers and consumers is indicative that digital payments are growing in popularity, as more and more people embrace a digital lifestyle,” says Mark Elliott, division president for Southern Africa at Mastercard. “We are excited to partner with Vodacom to make mobile digital payments a reality for most South Africans, while furthering our strategy to displace cash.”

Since launching Masterpass in SA in 2014, Mastercard says the digital payment service is used for payments at more than 150 000 retailers and billers nationwide.

The global payments technology company has been vocal about how displacing cash is fundamental to its digital strategy.

With the app’s “scan to pay” functionality, users will be able to scan a QR code to pay for goods and services wherever Masterpass is accepted, including all SnapScan and Zapper merchants.

Once a QR code is scanned, the user selects the card they wish to use, and enters their bank PIN number on their own device to complete the transaction.

Mariam Cassim, chief officer of Vodacom’s financial services, says: “As digital wallets gain popularity, we realise the need to offer our customers solutions that will enable them to adapt to the future of commerce.

“With so many of our customers now using smartphones, it makes sense to make it easier for them to pay for airtime and data, and conduct a wide range of payments at their favourite merchants – all from a single app. We’ll be adding even more features to the platform in the coming months.”

The VodaPay Masterpass app is available for download from the Google Play Store and the App Store.

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