Visa and SiriusXM Expand In-Car Voice-Assisted Payments

The system updates allow for token-controlled hands-free payments on everything from road tolls to fast food.

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Need to Know

  • Visa and SiriusXM have announced updates to their in-vehicle payment system first announced last year.
  • With a focus on reducing driver distractions, the in-car payment experience uses voice commands to prompt payments on everything from road tolls to fast food.
  • Once prompted, payments are processed automatically by the vehicle and its connected Visa account, making it a completely hands-free experience.
  • In the future, Visa is hoping to expand the voice-assisted program to include retailers.

Analysis

Not satisfied with creating technology for technology’s sake, Visa and SiriusXM are aiming to reset the in-car consumer experience with their voice-assisted in-car payment system. The idea, first unveiled at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show, received major upgrades at this year’s CES. 

At the center of the presentation is voice-assisted ‘Visa ID Intelligence’, responsible for everything from fingerprint recognition to payment authorization on gas purchases. The presentation highlights Visa and SiriusXM’s main focus: reducing driver distraction and increasing technology inside the car. 

“Our objective here, to bring this opportunity for all these new services and transactions into the vehicle in a way that makes sense,” said Peter Polic, VP and General Manager of SiriusXM Connected Vehicle Services.

Visa’s in-car payment system piggybacks on SiriusXM existing voice-controlled built-in entertainment ecosystem. The current version supports payments for gas, food, parking, and tolls, using tokens to secure transactions. Visa says this could open the door for even more payment experiences, including allowing for commuters to make purchases from retail stores. 

Ordering gas with Visa and SiriusXM’s new pilot.

“I am so excited with what the team has done to reset the space for the in-car market and really focus on the consumer experience,” said Olabisi Boyle, VP of IoT platforms for Visa.

In a newly-released video, Boyle showcases the technology by pre-paying for food, tolls, and gas. Recognizing key preferences, nearby restaurants are surfaced and different food options are presented for ordering. Boyle confirms a purchase with her voice, and then drives through and picks up the order once it is ready.

For gas, Boyle rolls up to a gas station and says “pre-pay for pump 7.” The idea is that car owners would not have to carry a credit card or cash (or fumble for either while driving and pulling up to the station) and access secure payments simply by saying so.

A study by PYMNTS.com found that super-connected consumers own at least six connected devices, and 58% of those super-connected consumers use those devices to make purchases. Add to that statistic that the average American has a 51-minute, round-trip commute five days a week, and the potential for a massive evolution in the connected vehicle ecosystem becomes obvious. 

Visa is currently in talks with major automakers to have their voice-assisted in-car payment system integrated into new car models.

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