Russ Jones

Wikipedia says, “Bitcoin is a software-based online payment system.” But what sort of payment system is it? We get this question all the time when we talk about Bitcoin in our workshops. At Glenbrook we like to start each Payments Boot Camp talking about payments systems fundamentals and the common attributes that can be used […]

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Realtime, consumer-facing authorization of card payment transactions has been available for some time but few of us have it offered to us by our issuers. Today, there’s a number of technology providers selling truly realtime notifications and two-way approval requests based on the live authorization stream. Glenbrook’s Russ Jones takes us through what’s on offer while […]

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Using a powerful examination of the challenge of online and mobile checkout, Glenbrook’s Russ Jones takes us for a deep dive into Visa Checkout, comparing it to PayPal and other methods of making the ecommerce experience slippery. At Checkout’s announcement in mid-July, Visa promised to support the initiative with significant advertising. One ad has been viewed […]

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In this Payments on Fire podcast, Russ Jones and I discuss last week’s Apple Pay announcement and how it fits with and compares to other checkout approaches. We begin looking at Apple Pay and Visa Checkout from the perspective of the checkout process because that’s what they are, ways to optimize checkout. We talk about […]

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Our work in payment data cuts across many areas. Who has what data? How is it best monetized? How can it be put to use for better decision making? How can it be augmented and enhanced. It’s in this last area of “enhancements” that we’ve become fascinated with a new startup company called Plaid. They […]

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Our clients are starting to ask us who we think is going to win the mobile wallet war in 2014. Questions like: What’s happening with the Isis rollout? What’s the next likely step in the evolution of the Google Wallet? Is PayPal’s In-Store initiative getting any consumer adoption? All of these questions are predicated on […]

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Micropayments is a problem that has never been solved in the payments industry. While there are various merchant-specific solutions for selling low-cost goods, the broader opportunity –– to pervasively enable micropayments –– continues to intrigue the payments industry. Why do micropayments endure as such a challenge in payments? The problem has been the same for […]

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Because we live in a tweet-constrained world, the short answer is yes. But I think every player in the financial services industry needs a Bitcoin strategy — payments enablers especially. By strategy I mean that every company involved in payments should evaluate whether Bitcoin, and digital currencies (math-based, virtual, etc.) more broadly, are friend or […]

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When I was a baby consultant some twenty years ago, I remember standing in Kepler’s Bookstore in Menlo Park (remember book stores?) thumbing through a paperback book called “The Rules of Marketing”. Rule #7 that said all successful markets will subdivide into submarkets as they grow over time. One of the examples cited was how […]

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What do eBay, Google, and Facebook all have in common? Sure, they all dominate their respective categories. And, yes, they all are hugely ambitious. Plus they all have demonstrated the ability to invent new markets. The other shared trait, in case you hadn’t noticed, is they are all in the payments business. Not in the […]

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We recently sat down (virtually) with BOKU to learn more about how the company views the mobile payments market and where BOKU Accounts fits in the emerging mobile POS landscape. What follows is a summary of what we learned and our reaction to the their strategy and approach. One of the reasons that the mobile […]

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Who knows what in payments? Sounds like a question begging for a snappy one-liner comeback. But this is a question we hear more and more from our clients. Particularly those that see the increasingly close relationship between payments and marketing — and want to better understand how the targeting of ads and offers can be […]

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I went by the San Carlos Home Depot on the way to the Glenbrook office this morning and used PayPal’s “Empty Hands” to pay for my purchase. The whole thing worked and I left the store with a Home Depot receipt that listed my payment method as “PayPal” instead of “Visa XXXXXXXXXXXX9297″. Here’s the in-store […]

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I realized today that mobile payments have “jumped the shark” as an emerging payments topic, and are now helplessly mainstream in the public’s mind. With USA Today and the Wall Street Journal on top of the story week to week, I find myself cringing at the confusion in the popular press. What put me over […]

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Over the winter break, Verizon announced (and then retracted) that it would begin to charge customers a $2.00 convenience fee in 2012 to pay their monthly bill online or over the phone — except in a multitude of cases “where the fee is waived or where no fee applies”. Huh? That’s what we said, too. […]

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