DBS PayLah!: First bank in Singapore to launch QR code payments via mobile wallet

DBS PayLah!: Receiving payment with QR code

[NEW SERVICE]  This one is coming from a DBS media alert for a new consumer payment solution service adding an arsenal of mobile payment methods in Singapore.


Kudos to DBS for being the first bank in Singapore to introduce QR code payments locally! Though QR code payment is already widespread in China with WeChat Pay as I witnessed it firsthand on my work trips to Shanghai.

QR code payment is extremely easy to use and incredibly fuss-free (with the exception of Samsung Pay, which I will come to later).

To receive, just show the permanent QR code embedded in PayLah! app to the payer. Vice versa when you need to pay, whip out PayLah! app and scan the OR code for the payee.

DBS PayLah!: Making payment with QR code


It is really easy to use QR code to pay/receive but the biggest challenge here is surely the adoption rate of PayLah! DBS claims in the media alert that the user base is now 500,000, roughly 1/10 of our population. Truth is there really aren't many around me that uses PayLah!.

The love of cold hard cash is still strong, DBS said more 80% of the transactions in small shops are completed with cash, regardless the definition of "small shops", that really means none of the existing cashless payment products has captured the market.

Existing cashless payment products have fairly obvious weakness. Credit/Debit cards are not accepted everywhere and not everyone can own one especially the young. Standard Chartered-SingTel Dash made a huge push in marketing but it's not a mass solution. For the same reason why Apple Pay is never going to capture the mass market; NFC terminals.

The most common cashless is probably NETS, so any merchants to adopt the likes of Dash and Apply Pay mostly have to deploy additional devices.

There is also Samsung Pay, my favourite cashless payment at the moment. When there is paywave or paypass terminal, Samsung Pay is acceptable, there is no deployment required. But it too isn't common because then it is only limited to Samsung phones users, and only S7 and above are compatible with paywave and paypass.

All said. I see DBS PayLah! having advantages over all the above with their compatibility with NET terminals (if it is really all the NET terminals as claimed, they will have Singapore covered instantly without deployment of additional device), big customer base (safe to say most will have an account) and ease of payment (QR code will be easy and trustable).
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