There has been lots of excitement about mobile payment apps that enable transfer of money to vendors as well as other users, just by providing just the receiver’s mobile number or email address.
Do these apps live up to their promise? How much convenience does it actually bring to our everyday life? We downloaded the OCBC Pay Anyone app to try out for a week and here are our thoughts.
For the uninitiated, or as Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong might say ‘suaku’, the OCBC Pay Anyone app allows OCBC customers to transfer money easily to anyone with a bank account, even if they are not OCBC customers. It also allows Pay Anyone users to receive money conveniently.
Setting Up The App
It took us less than 5 minutes to set up the app. And yes, that includes linking it with an OCBC account, which is necessary before you can start transferring money out.
Pay Anyone has 2 key functions – Pay Money and Request Money. Beyond that, there really isn’t anything much you can do with the app. We think it would be useful to include an additional function to check our account balance, since our account is already linked to the app.
Test #1: Using The App To Transfer Monthly Allowance To Parents
With great anticipation to usher in a new era of cashless transactions, we used the Pay Anyone app to transfer a monthly allowance to one of our writers’ mom.
The attempt failed terribly. Here’s what happened:
We had no problem sending out our money. It took us less than 2 minutes to select the receiver’s mobile number, log in to our OCBC account and then set a unique 6-digit passcode, which we will need to give the receiver separately so that she can complete the process.
Unfortunately, our receiver missed out on the SMS that informed her about the incoming funds awaiting her confirmation. We realise that with the numerous notifications, e-mails and messages each of us receive on a daily basis, its really easy for a SMS notification to be missed.
Test #2: Using The App To Buy Items On Carousell
We decided to test the convenience of the app by buying an iPhone case from a seller on Carousell. It didn’t give us much problems to get the Carousell seller to agree on the payment method – in fact, he was very familiar with the app.
We wondered if the acceptance level would be the same for big-ticket items. So, we approached another Carousell seller to buy a second-hand sewing machine that costs $135 and offered to make the payment through OCBC Pay Anyone. The seller responded that she prefers traditional payment methods (cash or bank transfer) since she hasn’t tried the app before.
Test #3: Going Dutch And Paying Someone After A Meal
As we shared in one of our articles, we are advocates for going cashless in Singapore. So an app like OCBC Pay Anyone comes in handy for us when we go Dutch at a gathering.
To pay our friend who was waiting to collect money from the rest, we did a quick transfer addressed to his mobile number and within seconds, he received a text notification to input the passcode and his bank account details. It took him less than 2 minutes to simply follow the instructions and get money into his bank account on the spot.
It is an efficient way to sort out the payment right on the spot and get on with life!
Read Also: Why I Stopped Withdrawing Money From The ATM
After one week, we reflected on how this app could be useful to our everyday lifestyle. The app does increase our overall efficiency level but we think that only applies to purchasing of small ticket items or transferring money to people who are familiar with the app. We do think that millennials may be more receptive to transferring money using a mobile app than the older generation.
In the journey to a cashless future, we think that more can be done to make sure no one is left behind, for instance, making the app bilingual for users of all generations.
Have you tried using the OCBC Pay Anyone app? We love to hear from you if the app does bring more convenience to you. Feel free to comment and share with us your views on our Facebook page.
Listen to our podcast, where we have in-depth discussions on finance topics that matter to you.