PayPal has dominated the electronic payments arena, with a virtual stranglehold in payment processing, as well as peer to peer payment transfers. Love em’ or hate em’, you have likely used PayPal to perform a transaction on a number of occasions. And, what does every monopoly need? Competition.
American Express is ready to enter the ring, flex their financial muscles, and potentially inject that healthy level of competition businesses require in order to stay competitive with Serve, their new iPhone app.
What does competition translate into from a business perspective, simple; give people more choices and services tend to go up, while prices come down. This is a win/win for the consumer, so let’s explore Serve and see what we can expect.
Features and Services:
Serve works in a similar capacity to that of PayPal, wherein sign up for an account at which point they may initiate payments to other members. The interface is clean, easy to navigate, and intuitive. You may add money, send money, request money, and easily set up sub-accounts or view your transaction history. Another welcomed addition is the ability to transfer funds to a pre-paid debit card that will allow Serve members to process transactions in real-world locations. During the launch, American Express has launched both an iPhone and Android version of Serve.
Rates and Pricing:
The Serve iPhone app is free of charge, as is signing up for an account. Serve does not charge for monthly fees, and there are no costs incurred to send money P2P. The transaction rates are assessed when you add money to the account, and the current rates are 2.9% + 30 cents per load.
Serve iPhone app [ iTunes Link ] requires iOS 3.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.