Starting in 2017, the New Payments Platform (NPP) will transform the way Australians make payments. For the first time, it will be possible to transfer funds quickly and easily, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – even between accounts at different banks. This initiative promises to bring value to financial institutions, consumers and businesses alike, and is expected to be rapidly adopted.
Among the NPP’s key features available at launch will be a centralised real-time addressing service allowing payments to be delivered to a user-friendly alias such as a mobile number or email address rather than the BSB and account numbers used today. Another important feature will be the Initial Convenience Service (ICS), the NPP’s first overlay service that will make it possible for consumers to send and receive payments in real-time.
While there’s already a lot of information available about the NPP (including Cuscal’s recent white paper “New Payments Platform: How the NPP can help you win the war for customer relationships”), it’s important to understand how its core functionality – what’s often referred to as the Basic Infrastructure – differs from the ICS and the other overlay services that will help bring the NPP to life. These overlay services will not only add tremendous value to the NPP for end-users, but also create considerable opportunities for financial institutions and fintech companies.
In the pages that follow, we’ll take a closer look at the different types of overlay services and the role they will play in driving NPP usage. This includes a variety of scenarios where financial institutions and businesses will try to create more seamless customer experiences. We’ll also explain some real-life applications of the ICS, along with its benefits and how it differs from the NPP’s Basic Infrastructure. Finally, we’ll outline several ideas for overlay services which you might see launched in the months.