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Paying By QR Code: Aus Retailers Trial New Tech

The QR code looks to be a failed technology before the pandemic. Like the MiniDisc before it, it had tried and failed to gain a foothold in the wider market. Then the pandemic hit, and we needed a way to track people.

Now that most Australians are adept at using the QR code to check into stores, Eftpos is hoping to transition this practice into a payment system, with support from supermarket giants Woolworths and Coles, along with NAB and the Commonwealth Bank.

The new eQR system works the same way as a check in – you hover your phone above a QR code, which is linked to your bank. Retailers can tie in deals and rewards cards to the system, streamlining other customer rewards processes, such as Flybuys.

Of course, the bigger plan is to unseat Apple, who have a stronghold on the ‘tap-and-pay’ system, which requires it to be funnelled through the Apple Watch, which charges the banks fees.

Coles general manager of financial services Paul Askew said eQR would “improve the customer experience when making a payment in our stores and linking this to other functions such as loyalty”.

“Now is the perfect time to introduce QR,” declared Paul Monnington, managing director of Woolworths Wpay.

“We look forward to building the next generation of seamless payment experiences with eftpos in the months ahead.

“We know speed and ease through the checkout are increasingly important to our customers amid their busy lives,” he said.

“We expect eQR will quickly become the QR equivalent of eftpos tap and pay on debit cards,” said eftpos CEO Stephen Benton.

“COVID has changed customer behaviour and Australians are now ready for the enhanced payment experience offered by eQR.”


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