Faster EMV is Coming

EMV has met with resistance by consumers, as transaction processing time has been slow compared with the more familiar mag stripe process.  As a result, both consumers and merchants have complained.  Hearing these complaints, the major payment card companies such as Visa and MasterCard have developed new technologies to accelerate transactions.  Or at least create the *perception* among consumers that they have accelerated transactions.

Visa has released a technology called Visa Quick Chip for EMV.  MasterCard has released a technologically identical solution called M/Chip Fast.  Both vendors’ releases work with EMV Payment Terminals and ATM Machines.  American Express has a similar technology called Amex Quick Chip.  However, Amex’s technology only works at EMV Terminals and not at ATMs.

These technology updates are all similar in that they accelerate the actual (or at least perceived) speed of an EMV Transaction.  They do so by allowing the payment card to be removed from the terminal before the transaction amount is finalized or before the authorization response has been received.  Processing is completed in 2 seconds, and can begin at any time during the checkout process.

No new equipment is needed to employ this technology update.  Rather, merchants merely need to download and install a software update.  No additional testing or certification is needed by Visa, MasterCard or EMVCo.  Additionally, the update has no impact on transaction routing, the merchant, the merchant’s bank, network or card issuer.

Visa’s documentation describes the capabilities of the technology as follows:

“Remove Card Before Authorization Response – Generate the EMV cryptogram based on the final transaction amount, but allow the card to be removed before the authorization response.”

“Generate Cryptogram Without Final Sale Amount – Create the EMV cryptogram before the final transaction amount is known and prompt the cardholder to remove the card. The final amount will be included in the non-EMV transaction data.”

In the case or restaurateurs these capabilities will permit the same transaction to be updated to include a tip.  Visa and MasterCard also point out that for any merchant will benefit, as card-in-terminal times can be shortened, transaction wait times will be reduced, and customers should perceive that transaction processing time is faster.

The more technically-inclined will be interested to know that the technology works as a modification of the payment application around the EMV Kernel, which reduces the time the card remains in the terminal.  It does so by allowing a contact chip transaction to mimic a contactless chip transaction.

The major payment card companies hope that the introduction of faster chip processing technology like these software releases will serve to speed the adoption and acceptance of EMV, among both consumers and merchants.

To learn more view the following video:

Visa Quick Chip for EMV


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