PayPal and Android Pay Join Hands to Make Digital Payments Easier

PayPal announced its collaboration with Google’s Android Pay as PayPal intends to work beyond conventional means that stretch to mobile applications and regular retailers. This partnership will allow PayPal to be a method of payment for users through Android Pay service. Thus, users will have the convenience using this payment service for Uber, Walgreens, Subway, and Dunkin’ Donuts in the near future. The service will enable users to see their balance on PayPal along with letting them include their cards to the account in the coming next months. Google’s digital wallet has brought the rivals to agree on a common ground, making the purchasing experience easier and convenient for users.

The moves is in line with the company ongoing efforts to collaborate with rivals as it did with Visa. The partnership between Visa and PayPal has allowed users to make payments via smartphones. Additionally, it also allowed Venmo users to withdraw money from their Venmo account that is linked to Visa cards. PayPal has been sincerely making efforts to be a part of the digital payments landscape.

Apple Emerges as a Strong Contender

PayPal has joined hands with MasterCard for enabling store payments. This collaboration has allowed PayPal’s Braintree merchants to use MasterCard’s digital wallet as a mode of payment. The company is trying to break into the stiff competition created by Apple Pay by increasing users for its point-of-sales. The digitization move by Apple is estimated to lure in 86 million users for the company. Following similar footsteps is expected to help the economy, vendors, and consumers over the coming few years.

Medicare Extends Benefits for Patients with Chronic Diseases

Patients suffering from chronic diseases make up a significant portion of patients availing Medicare benefits. Chronic conditions entail long-term expenditure on treatments and rehabilitation. Chronic diseases such as diabetes can also cause other conditions related to blood pressure and the cardiovascular system, which also lead to significant expenditure. Chronic mental problems such as dementia are another matter altogether, with the decrease in the quality of life causing just as many or more problems to the patients as the medical concerns themselves.

Number of Medicare Applications with Chronic Diseases Rising

Of the 57 million Americans on Medicare, close to two-thirds have multiple chronic diseases. These may include any combination of cancer, arthritis, dementia, heart diseases and other cardiovascular concerns, and diabetes. Many of these diseases are also interlinked and are often associated. Chronic health conditions such as these lead to functional limitations, higher healthcare spending, and a notable decrease in the quality of life. Asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, hepatitis, depression, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, atrial fibrillation, chronic kidney diseases, autism spectrum disorders, and osteoporosis are some of the other main chronic diseases prevalent in the U.S.

CCM: A Round-the-clock Monitoring Tool for Chronic Patients

Medicare has announced the launch of a new benefit called Chronic Care Management (CCM). The CCM program ensures continuous tracking of the patient’s condition, including additional payments to the doctors responsible for the treatment. The treatment will also be mapped out taking into consideration the extent of the disease and the observed effect of the prescribed medication. Provisions have been made for the inclusion of modern advancements in the healthcare sector such as remote monitoring, which makes the process convenient for both physician and patient.

Availing the benefits of CCM requires patients to be enrolled in Medicare. They also need to have multiple chronic diseases expected to cause functional decline or place you at risk of death in the coming 12 months.

Can Rise in Diabetics Ensure Greater Presence of Apple in Healthcare?

Apple has recently been developing noninvasive sensors for monitoring blood sugar levels in order to cater to the needs of diabetes patients. A whole new species of wearable healthcare devices such as Apple watch and its ilk are on the rise. According to unnamed sources, feasibility trials are in progress at its clinical sites in Bay Area.

Emergence of Cutting-edge Medical Devices to Ramp up Apple’s Portfolio

This development is not surprising, considering the tech giant’s recent moves. In 2016, two new Apple health apps, 3D4 Medical and AirStrip made their appearance. With the introduction of CareKit, ResearchKit, and HealthKit, the evolution of medical devices for diabetes is only an evident advancement in the company’s trajectory.

The acquisition of Gliimpse, a personal health record startup in August 2016 was a strategic groundwork for extending Apple’s presence in the healthcare vertical. Founded in Silicon Valley in 2013, Gliimpse aims to offer ‘personalized and shareable medical records’ to every single patient across the U.S.

IBM Watson Health and Microsoft Emerge as Key Contenders

However, Apple is not the singular entity to plunge into the promising healthcare terrain. In January 2017, IBM Watson Health announced its distinct collaboration with Best Doctors, a leading clinical consultation provider, with the common objective of offering key insights on the available options in the treatment of cancer. On receiving patients’ approval, the Best Doctors team can collect medical records and then feed the necessary data into Watson. Watson will in turn generate a report that will be assessed by the globally renowned oncologists in the network of Best Doctors.

Microsoft has also been targeting healthcare domain by joining hands with two different entities, Twist Biosciences and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Now Make Cashless Payments by Simply Waving your Smart Phone

Contactless payment is such a relief in countries such as India where strategic government moves such as demonetization are in the run. And for developed nations, this not-so-new but hot payments concept is an escalation in the world of commerce that tellingly widens up the customer service portfolio. Falling on similar lines, Samsung Pay is currently making the news columns with its “revolutionary way to pay” mobile payment setup. However, tech newbies might find it surprising to know that contactless payment has always been around, since two to three years.

Contactless payment is just what it reads, meaning you can complete cashless payments without even swiping or inserting your card into a point of sales (PoS) device. All you need to do is wave your smartphone at a PoS machine.

Contactless Payment Works on Three Types of Technology Platforms

Magnetic secure transmission (MST) is a cost-effective technology that allows merchants to process contactless payments without the need to make a new hardware investment. It simply emits a magnetic signal from customer’s smartphone which can be read by a conventional PoS terminal magnetic strip card reader.

Contactless payment on ICICI’s Pockets app is a perfect instance of the host card emulation (HCE) technology. You need an Android operating system on your mobile phone to use HCE at any near-field communication (NFC)-enabled terminal. It converts physical debit or credit cards into virtual cards.

The NFC technology is the most average of all as it mandates both merchant’s PoS terminal and customer’s card to be NFC compliant. However, transactions can be completed even using stickers and tags besides cards. The Tap & Go Debit Card of the State Bank of India is a practical example of the NFC technology.