Mastercard’s Move to the Car Dashboard Steps Up With HERE

January 12, 2018         By: Steven Anderson

The notion of a connected car has only been on the increase in the last few years; seems like fresh news about the connected car has hit the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) every January since at least 2015. Now, recent word has emerged about Mastercard’s partnership with HERE Technologies, which has expanded to step up progress on the connected car front.

Essentially, Mastercard and HERE are working to make the car the primary vector of commerce so mobile it doesn’t even stop. This includes the development of a set of global standards, as well as new application programming interfaces (APIs) designed to add more features to the connected car. One such application is the growth of “personalized discovery” tools that allow for not only secure check-out, but also improved loyalty reward program use.

Mastercard has, at last report, been working for the last five years on such programs, including not just with HERE, but also with a slate of travel and car companies as well as mass transit providers and others.

HERE’s chief operations officer and executive vice president Angel L. Mendez noted “Location technology and digital payments are at the heart of how we access services in the physical world. Together they enable people, businesses and cities to deliver, and act on, valued information at the right time and location. We look forward to working with Mastercard on a wide-ranging innovation program that will help shape the personal experience of users across transportation modes and within smarter cities.”

Just recently, we saw how the commuter market represented a whole lot of cash, around $212 billion every year. Having a piece of that market, even a meager one percent, represents a whole lot of liquid cash flooding into someone’s coffers. There’s little doubt Mastercard is more than aware that, if it manages to become the payment infrastructure provider of choice for cars, it has a great chance to land a slice of that market.

While it will certainly have to compete against Visa, individual apps, and a host of banks eager to get in, Mastercard is in a great position to take a healthy slug of this market for itself. This could be one major new payday to come for Mastercard.