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Fri Aug 3 2007 11:27:56

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

By: Ina Steiner

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Amazon.com announced an online payment system enabler that looks to be the basis for some great innovation. Amazon Flexible Payments Service (Amazon FPS) is a "web service," meaning it is designed for developers to build out applications (or integrate with existing applications). Here's AuctionBytes' Newsflash article about the service that just launched this morning.

The potential for individuals and small companies to use tools to create ecommerce-enabled applications is huge. Buyers have the security of using the Amazon payment method and can use credit cards, bank transfers, or Amazon Payments balance transfers.

In the last year or so, I've seen some interesting tools developed by "micro developers" for "micro merchants" using the platforms of larger companies, such as eBay, Craigslist and Facebook, often using Amazon web services or APIs from such companies as Shopping.com (owned by eBay) and Data Unison (provides eBay market data). Mashups, toolbars, apps for mobile devices, and the latest craze - widgets - have come out of the fertile minds of entrepreneurial developers. Amazon just gave them new power, and I'm eager to see what will come out of it.



Whether this is a threat to eBay, allowing buyers and sellers to bypass the marketplace, or will help it by facilitating transactions on eBay, is yet to be seen - and may be a bit of both. Clearly it's a threat to PayPal (though I don't think there's a stored-value aspect to Amazon FPS as there is with PayPal), and maybe more so to Google Checkout.

Ecommerce is never boring. Let's hear from developers - what's so great (or not so great) about Amazon FPS?




Comments (10) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: foo

Fri Aug 3 12:15:28 2007

Of course there's a stored value aspect there- 'Amazon Balance'

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Ina Steiner

Fri Aug 3 12:41:02 2007

Here's a blog post from a developer that's been testing the service:
http://tinyurl.com/34u67k

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Ina Steiner

Fri Aug 3 12:44:11 2007

Foo, how do shoppers (who are not sellers) fund their Amazon balance?

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: ananth

Fri Aug 3 12:51:14 2007

They have an account management site
(payments.amazon.com),where one can fund the Amazon balance

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Ina Steiner

Fri Aug 3 23:40:40 2007

Breaking News! Valleywag guilty of analysis:
http://tinyurl.com/2epaqp

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Ina Steiner

Fri Aug 3 23:45:39 2007

captcha code is being cranky, just testing.

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Val

Tue Aug 7 13:42:21 2007

Heh, would u change the way u were used to pay for Amazon FPS? as for me i don't trust such innovations...
what do u think, ll be it realized well so that people should use it widely?

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: ed

Tue Aug 14 22:14:00 2007

Sounds promising Amazon payments. Do you know what kind information a merchant will receive when a customer makes purchase and how soon the funds are available ?

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: Eric Frakes

Mon Aug 20 12:45:14 2007

Prices on Amazon credit cards are sky high.  For a paypal alternative maybe BidPay is the better option (especially for ebay).

Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation   Amazon's New Payment Service Will Spark Innovation

by: dmason2

Mon Jan 28 18:30:42 2008

I have been testing Amazon Flexible Payments for the last couple of months. I have used/do use paypal google checkout bidpay etc. on my St. Elsewhere site. Amazon Payments is by far the absolute worst:

-No customer service at all. They provide an email form and never answer emails. Customers call Amazon's "Indian" Customer service department who have not even heard of Amazon Payments. Seller support states they are a separate department and "Have no phones".

-No Fraud protection. It is impossible to verify if the customer's shipping/billing address is the same as that on the Amazon account, opening the vendor up to chargebacks. The only information you get back from Amazon is the name on the account used to purchase from your store.

-Delay in declining orders. Orders are approved at checkout but then declined later.

I thought I would never say this but there is a payment system that is worse than Paypal. Amazon Flexible Payments!



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