The news: Amazon’s palm-scanning point-of-sale (POS) device launched an age verification function that lets customers purchase alcohol. The feature will debut at Denver MLB stadium Coors Field.
How it works: Age verification complements Amazon One’s existing infrastructure.
Amazon’s strategy: Age verification is another push to expand Amazon One, which is far from breaking into the mainstream.
Amazon has countered that by expanding into categories where it doesn’t compete, including event venues, convenience stores, and quick-service dining. Age verification supports that push and could help it attract partners by resolving a pain point that can slow transaction times and add friction. It might appeal to mobile payment super-users who increasingly feel inclined to leave physical wallets at home.
The bigger picture: More use cases for biometric payments are popping up, which increases the threat that this tech poses to legacy terminal providers.
The takeaway: Legacy terminal providers should invest in building biometric tech of their own or partner with firms that do, as JPMorgan and Toshiba have done. Otherwise, they might risk disintermediation—which could cost them annual growth in the POS installed base market.
Go deeper: To learn more about how biometrics are disrupting the POS space, check out our February 2023 report “Powering the Point-of-Sale”.
This article originally appeared in Insider Intelligence's Payments Innovation Briefing—a daily recap of top stories reshaping the payments industry. Subscribe to have more hard-hitting takeaways delivered to your inbox daily.
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