Speeding Up EMV Transactions with Software Updates

Speeding Up EMV Transactions with Software Updates

If it’s not clear by now, EMV has emerged as a mainstay technology. But in doing so, many feel it has increased the time it takes to process a transaction. Speeding up EMV transactions has been a huge topic of conversation with clients. We hear all the time that EMV terminals are too slow. It’s frustrating for merchants focussed on speeding up the checkout process.

The Problem with EMV Processing

Today’s marketing is all about speed and ease of use. Huge amounts time and money have gone into tech such as Apple Pay or other Wallet Apps. So it stands out when something goes the other direction and slows things down. Many believe EMV has done just that. And in reality, it has to some small degree. But even more, what it has done is highlight the length of time required to process credit cards.

EMV requires cards to stay seated during the entire transaction, rather than swipe. Users are then more aware of the time needed to complete the transaction. It “feels” longer because you have to wait the full time before you get your card back in your hand. Even though the actual approval time is relatively the same. Most users in the past could swipe and put their card away while the transaction was processing. So they were’t paying attention to the time required for approval. 

Visa and MasterCard’s Response to Speeding Up EMV

Visa and MasterCard have been paying attention to merchant and consumer complaints. They are both working on ways to reduce the amount of time cards need to be inserted in POS terminals. Visa’s Quick Chip and MasterCard’s M/Chip Fast are their solutions to slow checkouts.

Visa’s offering relies on software updates which allow users to remove their cards much sooner than traditional EMV transactions.  

Visa Quick Chip for EMV from Visa Vimeo on Vimeo.

Mastercard’s M/Chip Fast is similar, speeding things up by changing the software’s work flow. It reduces the authentication process to a single step instead of two.

The big take-away from all this is that the credit card companies are very in tune with users and merchant’s concerns. It is nice to see them using feedback to improve the user experience.

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Don Bregin

Don is an industry professional with 30+ years of experience in finance and accounting, risk management, general business management, credit card processing and electronic payments.

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