Elevating Belgium’s finest mobile payment app

Digital Product Design
Software Engineering

Bancontact Payconiq Company and In The Pocket go way back. In 2013, we started working on the infamous Bancontact app that found its way into countless smartphones. Five years later, we merged two of Belgium’s finest payment solutions: Payconiq by Bancontact was born. If anything, our long-term collaboration with Bancontact Payconiq Company proves the lasting benefits of continuous development.


Mobile Payments made easy: Bancontact 2.0

It’s hard to imagine a world without mobile payments today. The Bancontact app made payments so much more convenient when it first launched in 2014. The first version knocked the socks off early adapters, but an extra push was needed for this new product to get a foothold into the mainstream market. Bancontact came knocking at our door, and soon after, the Bancontact 2.0 project was born.

Winning the trust of consumers

The eye-catcher of the new app was undoubtedly the P2P payments: instantly transferring money to each other via QR codes. Before, you could already make mobile payments on websites and e-commerce platforms. Enabling this technology for peer-to-peer use skyrocketed the popularity of banking applications. To this day, the P2P payments remain the most important driver for the Bancontact app.

The biggest challenge in making mobile payments a mainstream success is giving people the trust and confidence that they are easy and secure. Keep those two words in mind.

Winning a consumer’s trust heavily relies on user experience. We needed to go to the essence of the app: simple payments. We got rid of all elements that might confuse users or slow down the payment process and added clear informative messages to every step of the payment. The navigation was also cut down to its essence with intuitive ‘pay’ and ‘receive’ buttons highlighting the main functionalities of the app.

Security is equally important when dealing with fintech. For obvious reasons, we can’t go into details, but the app is protected against hacking by the most recent technologies available. And your privacy? Also in good hands. The Bancontact app doesn’t store any personal user data.

Payments for the public

With a simplified outlook and fortified security, the Bancontact app found its way to the large public. The app is now integrated into almost every banking app or any other payment solution. P2P’s and classical networks of terminals incorporated the QR code, allowing users to pay on- and offline using the application. Without a doubt, we can say that the Bancontact app paved the way for nationwide mobile payments.


Merging Belgium’s finest payment solutions

Not long after the success of the Bancontact app, In The Pocket was sitting in the front row of the fintech wedding of the year: the merger of Bancontact Company and Payconiq Belgium. We already proved that building and maintaining such a complex product, without compromising on security and UX, is In The Pockets’ bread and butter. No wonder we were delighted when the opportunity was given to develop the “merged” mobile application: Payconiq by Bancontact, the first tangible result of this marriage.

Looking for the perfect recipe

Merging the applications of Payconiq and Bancontact wasn’t simply mixing the two apps together. We took the best of two worlds, weighed every aspect down and carefully stirred the ingrediënts into one refined application.

“Only six months to deliver a fully working app. Only In The Pocket, who was responsible for the delivery of the Bancontact app the past few years, was in the position to do it.”
- Thierry Huque, CTO of Bancontact Payconiq Company

We started by mapping the full range of existing solutions and products in collaboration with all key stakeholders. With this overview, we could rank the different options available to the customer and start creating a new application within a given timeframe. Our clear understanding of the existing environments enabled us to focus on the challenges brought by the integration.

To make sure the end-user didn’t feel like the two applications were merely smashed together, we used both existing as well as new APIs developed by the Payconiq International team. A guarantee for a smooth onboarding for users who didn’t use any of the two apps before.

Appearance matters

To make sure the application felt familiar to both Bancontact and Payconiq users, we needed to come up with a way to intertwine both designs into one product. Visually, we held on to an upgraded bright colour palette to make the app stand out. The clear magenta stands in high contrast with the most commonly used colour in mobile applications: blue.


Connecting value-added services

To stand still is to fall behind. Having an app for all your payments might have sufficed a few years ago, but nowadays financial apps distinguish themselves by integrating clever services. So we didn’t stop at the merge, we took it a few steps further.

The more you can do with an app - without making it complicated - the better. That is why we started developing and integrating useful value-added services within Payconiq by Bancontact. Whether it’s adding your loyalty cards, purchasing a bus or train ticket, collecting funds for a group gift, buying a parking ticket or even donating to a good cause, it can be done within one and the same app.

Deploy or die

Legend says it is tattooed on our chests. We can’t deny or confirm that, but we can say that we live by those words. Month after month we deploy new updates throughout the app and monitor them closely. Instead of releasing one huge update a year, we prefer releasing multiple in a short time span. This way, we quickly see what works and what doesn’t and it allows us to actively adjust our course and reap the benefits.

The outcome

About 7 years ago, we laid the foundations for our relationship with Bancontact Payconiq Company. Brick by brick, we’re continuing to fortify our partnership and making Payconiq by Bancontact a rock-solid player in the ever-changing financial market. Never resting on our laurels, we settle for no less than continuous development to keep Bancontact Payconiq Company on top of their game. We saw the rise of mobile payments, attended the fintech marriage of the decade and welcomed third parties to the banking app. Honestly, we can’t wait to bring about the next big developments.

You’ve guessed it by now: fintech is continuously changing. Learn how you, as a financial player, can stay ahead of the curve.

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