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Friday, March 24, 2023

Russians will pay for purchases in supermarkets “with a look”

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Sberbank customers in Russia will soon be able to pay for their purchases by scanning their face.

Company X5 Retail Group, which manages the Pyaterochka, Perekrestok and Karusel supermarket chains, together with Sber and Visa launched a payment service by looking at the self-service cash registers in Pyaterochka and Perekrestok stores, says X5 message.

“The biometric identification of the self-service cash register is implemented on the basis of developments from the X5 Innovation Laboratory and VisionLabs technologies. The new payment method will be available in 150 Perekrestok supermarkets by the end of March, and in April several Pyaterochka stores in Moscow will join the service. Visa is a strategic partner of the project,” the press release claims.

The service is available to Sberbank customers. To take advantage of the technology, users must select the appropriate point in the mobile application and specify a card from which funds will be withdrawn. To pay with a look at the self-service cash registers in X5 stores, after scanning the cargo, they must select the appropriate mode, remove the mask for a few seconds and look into the camera.

The service is implemented only at the self-service checkouts, which are X5’s own development. Currently, the payment technology using biometrics operates on 350 devices, but technically the entire network – of over 6,000 devices – can be included in the service. After taking stock of the first pilot stage and receiving feedback from buyers, they will decide on the large-scale introduction of the technology in all regions.

X5 Chief Executive Officer Igor Shekhterman noted that the biometric identification and payment technology has been successfully tested as part of a pilot project and is ready for deployment in X5 retail chains. “Biometrics is becoming a standard feature and will soon be available to millions of our customers across Russia,” said Shekhterman, quoted in the report.

Kirill Tsarev, Deputy Chairman of the Board, Head of the Retail Business block of Sberbank, pointed out that neither cash, nor a bank card, nor a smartphone is needed to use the new service: just show your face and the payment will be made. “I am convinced that very soon contactless biometric payment solutions will be used everywhere and this payment method will become as common as paying with a bank card or smartphone,” he said.


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