Alibaba’s Latest Payments Innovation: Selfie-Powered Transactions
As mobile payments become more a part of the business landscape, the question of how to make them safer is top of mind. Alibaba — the vast Chinese ecommerce company that closed out 2014 with the biggest U.S.-based IPO to date — has a solution.
This week, Alibaba founder Jack Ma spoke at the CeBit conference in Hanover, Germany and demonstrated a new service called “Smile to Pay” that would give consumers a password-free way to shop online. The service would allow users to make a purchase from their mobile phone, then require them to snap a selfie to authenticate the purchase using Alibaba’s facial recognition technology.
“Today we’ll show you a new technology, how in the future people will buy things online,” said Ma of this latest innovation, which will first be rolled out in China.