Mobile payments service Gust Pay, is now out of Beta. The Stellenbosch based startup, which recently won the best South African startup at Seedstars World, launched a new version of their mobile payment app for smartphones last week.
Gust Pay version 1.2 is free and available for iOS and Android devices. The new release includes a big set of changes: cleaner and simpler user interface, improved registration process, a new backend with multi-currency support, easy WiFi profile installation, secure credit card linking and quick account top up. “Launching the new Gust Pay app was a crucial step in getting our payment system ready for the summer season of music events,”” says Joe Botha, one of the founders of Gust Pay. “”Our credit card features greatly improve the convenience of using Gust Pay at events. The new smartphone app complements our NFC wristband technology which offers ticketing, access control, brand activation opportunities and a great user experience,”” says Botha. “”2013 is set to be a watershed year for mobile payments as user comfort with ecommerce has finally caught up with the available technology,”” says Botha. Industry analysts believe that 2013 is the year in which more than 50% of new mobile phone sales in South Africa will be smartphones. iOS and Android currently represent about 3 million devices. The smartphone market is growing rapidly with about 200,000 devices activated each month. South Africa has about 10 million debit and credit cards which are eCommerce enabled and recent statistics show that there is a growing culture of online transactions among South Africans. “”Smartphones are enabling a convergence in commerce,”” says Botha. “”As a mobile financial services startup our challenge is to convince people to pay with their phones or wristbands rather than cash or plastic. To swing the culture of payments towards smartphones, we have to provide services that fit the lifestyle of our users and offer convincingly more value than plastic cards. Our strategy is to integrate retail payments, event payments, in-shop WiFi, location services, loyalty and social media,”” says Botha. Gust recently opened a sales office in Cape Town and is seeing keen interest for its services in the UK, Egypt, Spain and Australia. “”With incidents like the recent R3 million theft at a major local music event we definitely believe cashless event technology is the future. By combining our NFC wristbands with convenient smartphones management features we believe we’re offering a world first,”” concludes Botha.