PayPal hints at offering ‘offline’ payments after DMA's implementation

PayPal CEO says PayPal customers have expressed interest in using PayPal beyond just online payments
The image shows PayPal app on phone. — Unsplash
The image shows PayPal app on phone. — Unsplash

PayPal has indicated that it is "ready" to take advantage of the upcoming EU regulation, the Digital Markets Act (DMA), once it is fully implemented next month for major tech "gatekeepers" like Apple.

One of the key changes for PayPal under the DMA is the opportunity for third-party apps to utilise the NFC technology currently used by Apple Pay in their own mobile wallet apps. Additionally, iPhone users will have the option to set another mobile wallet as their default, as per the new EU regulations.

Alex Chriss, PayPal CEO,  mentioned that PayPal customers have expressed interest in using PayPal beyond just online payments, and the company is actively working on making this possible. 

Read more: PayPal to release bunch of AI-backed tools, 'one-click' checkout feature

“…our customers that love PayPal on the online e-commerce side are demanding being able to have an omnichannel and offline solution, as well. So, we’ll be working closely on this. And when it is available, we will be ready to be able to deliver for our customers, both online and offline,” he said. 

His remarks suggest that the payments giant is developing something related to NFC mobile wallets, considering the mention of an "offline solution." 

PayPal has struggled to expand into offline payments at physical retail stores for many years. They have attempted various initiatives in this area, such as partnering with national retailers in the US, collaborating with point-of-sale software and terminal manufacturers, enabling payments at local shops through their app, acquiring mobile wallet technology, using QR codes for retailer payments, partnering with credit card companies for offline payments, providing tools for offline merchant sales, and more. 

Despite the rise in contactless payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Apple Pay maintained its position as the leading mobile payment service in the US. 

In the EU, there is a significant adoption of mobile wallets, with a study from 2023 indicating that 72% of the population actively utilising this technology. 

Another analysis predicts that the mobile payments market in Europe will grow to $108.35 billion by 2024 and $373.29 billion by 2029. While Apple and Google are making progress in this market, a study revealed that 90% of Europeans have used PayPal services.