The Singtel Group this week announced plans to interconnect mobile wallets across different ecosystems through an interoperable platform.
As a start, the Group plans to first link the mobile wallets of Singtel and its regional associates, with the first commercial launch between Singtel and AIS. This will be the first time that different mobile wallets across different markets are connected to offer seamless cross-border payments at physical merchants.
The commercial launch of the service is planned for mid-2018 between Singapore and Thailand where Singtel and AIS have obtained regulatory clearance. This will enable over 1.5 million visitors travelling between Singapore and Thailand each year to use Singtel Dash and my AIS apps at a total of more than 20,000 retail merchant acceptance points in Singapore and Thailand.
Mobile wallet interconnectivity means that travellers can continue to use their existing home wallet app to make payments when overseas. For example, Singtel Dash users travelling to Thailand need only open the Singtel Dash app to generate a QR code at any participating AIS mPAY merchant to scan. Consumers will see the transaction amount in both foreign and home currencies before payment. This will help travellers avoid the hassle of physically carrying cash and the uncertainty of foreign exchange costs.
The Group plans to progressively expand this service from the second half of 2018 to other regional associates, which include Airtel, Globe and Telkomsel, taking into consideration the respective country’s regulations.
Singtel’s Open Platform, a group-wide payment gateway, already enables the Group’s mobile customers to make purchases online using direct carrier billing or their respective telco mobile wallets. The introduction of mobile wallet interconnectivity allows mobile customers to enjoy cashless payments at brick-and-mortar retailers when overseas.