Scotland-based Tesco Bank has integrated Mastercard's Open Banking Connect service to provide enhanced card features to its customers. Tesco's 2.6 million credit card customers will be able to instantly see their card balance and decide how much they want to pay. Any updates to a customer's account will be reflected immediately. Additionally, consumers do not have to enter their enter credit card numbers when making payments online. Open Banking Connect provides personalization through price comparisons as well. Open Banking ultimately makes the online shopping experience for UK consumers much easier.
The Pay by Bank method allows Tesco to utilize an existing infrastructure through Mastercard, rather than having to build one from scratch.
Mastercard is also getting closer to bringing its digital currency (i.e., cryptocurrencies) involvement mainstream. It recently announced a virtual digital currency testing platform for central bank digital currencies (CBDCs). The platform will allow banks to simulate the issuance, distribution and exchange of CBDCs between consumers and financial service providers.
“Central banks have accelerated their exploration of digital currencies with a variety of objectives, from fostering financial inclusion to modernizing the payments ecosystem,” said Mastercard Executive Vice President Raj Dhamodharan in a statement as reported by pymts.com. “This new platform supports central banks as they make decisions now and in the future about the path forward for local and regional economies.”
Digital banks are not against digital currencies but are still deciding how to support innovation and maintain financial stability with them. In fact, as noted by Mastercard, 80 percent of Central Banks are engaged in some form of CBDCs.
Through its cryptocurrency partner program, Mastercard has been testing digital currencies and working with digital wallet providers for some time now. Its goal is to make it easier for consumers to spend their digital currencies in a secure and compliant way at any Mastercard payment location.