Bump Pay will let users exchange money by bumping smartphones

Bump Lab's second app is a foray into mobile payments

The startup Bump Labs threw its hat into the crowded mobile payments ring on Thursday, launching an app that allows people to exchange money by tapping their phones together.

The app, called Bump Pay, builds on the company's core technology, which enables two smartphones using Bump apps to transfer data by being tapped together. Unlike NFC (near-field communication), which Google and others are promoting for mobile payments, Bump requires physical contact between devices. The company's current app, called Bump, allows users to transfer contact information and photos.

To use Bump Pay, a user types in how much money he or she wants to send and then bumps phones with the intended recipient. Bump's software determines which two phones collided. The app then transfers funds from one user's PayPal account to the other's. Both users must have previously downloaded the app and linked it to their PayPal accounts.

"Bump Pay is interesting because of its novelty, which may spur trial, but being within arm's reach of the person you're paying back is not always convenient and will limit its usefulness," said Denee Carrington, an analyst with Forrester Research.

But Chris Silva, an Altimeter Group analyst, sees proximity as the right approach in the U.S., "where people are just so paranoid about using any type of technology where there's a transaction taking place and you're not actually exchanging funds or a card."

"I think it makes sense for what people are going to feel comfortable using," Silva said.

As for the security of the app, Silva noted that some Bump Pay users could claim that they had accidentally tapped another person's phone, and thus attempt to recoup their funds. "There's a risk, but it's almost completely borne by the credit card issuers and the banks who are going to be stuck arbitrating those disputes."

Bump Pay will compete with Venmo, Square and PayPal Here, among other companies.

Bump Pay is initially available only for the iPhone.

Cameron Scott covers search, web services and privacy for The IDG News Service. Follow Cameron on Twitter at CScott_IDG.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Cameron Scott

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?