[LA Times] Money exchange through email is coming...

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From: Adam Rifkin -4K (adam@XeNT.ics.uci.edu)
Date: Thu Mar 09 2000 - 22:28:15 PST

Looks like it has only taken the Internet five years to completely
reinvent First Virtual...


The question is, are people ready for it *this* time around?
And is it me or is the name "emoneymail" really awful?

Rohit, looks like we had the pricing policy for this business model
almost completely perfect to what's actually being implemented...

> New Web Site a Money Exchange for Users
> Internet: Bank One's move into consumer-to-consumer electronic payments
> ups the ante in the battle for customers.
> By EDMUND SANDERS, Times Staff Writer, March 9 2000
> You've got money!
> One of the nation's largest banks has launched a Web site that will
> allow Grandma to send $50 birthday checks via e-mail and parents to
> electronically zap emergency loans from their credit cards to a college
> student's bank account.
> EMoneyMail, a unit of Bank One Corp. in Chicago, is offering the
> new service to anyone seeking to transfer up to $500, as long as both
> individuals have e-mail addresses.
> It marks the boldest move yet by a major bank into the rapidly
> emerging business of consumer-to-consumer electronic payments and opens
> a new front in the war over bank customers.
> Analysts predict that the new service will increase consumer
> acceptance and awareness of emerging technologies for electronic
> payments by providing a simple, fast and low-cost way to transfer money
> online.
> "We are seeing the beginning of a new, credible form of digital
> cash transfer," said Robert Sterling, analyst at Jupiter Communications,
> a research firm. "This could change the way people interact with their
> banks and how they use their credit cards."
> Under the new service, consumers can transfer money from their
> credit card, debit card or checking account and send it to someone else
> via e-mail. Users do not have to be Bank One customers, but senders must
> pay a $1 fee.
> After opening the e-mail notice, recipients link to the
> EMoneyMail.com Web site, where they can direct the money to their own
> credit card, debit card or checking account. There is no fee to
> recipients unless they request a printed check, which costs $1.
> Bank One officials predict that one in five U.S. households may
> eventually use e-mail-based payments, replacing many of the smaller
> transactions that are now conducted with cash or checks. The bank also
> anticipates the service will compete with money-transfer companies, such
> as Western Union, and will be used for electronic bill-paying,
> particularly with small businesses.
> Some analysts questioned whether e-mail payments will catch on with
> consumers once the novelty wears off.
> "It's a great marketing tool to get customers," said Jim Bruene,
> editor of Online Banking Report in Seattle. "I just don't know how broad
> the appeal will be."
> Nevertheless, analysts expect that other banks will follow Bank One
> into the e-mail payment business as a way to attract online customers
> and increase traffic at their Web sites. Recent experience also has
> shown that online bank customers are more profitable and loyal than
> other bank customers.
> "They are the cream of the customer base," Sterling said.
> Earlier this month, Wells Fargo Bank launched a joint venture with
> EBay Inc. for a similar person-to-person payment service, but it is
> limited to the online auction company's shoppers. A Wells Fargo
> spokeswoman said Wednesday that the San Francisco bank is hoping to
> expand the service.
> Some other banks, like Bank of America, offer consumer-to-consumer
> electronic payment through their online banking systems but only for
> their own customers.
> Banks feel the need to push into these new online financial
> services amid a growing threat from nonbank Internet leaders--from
> Microsoft Corp. to CheckFree Holdings--that have been stealing customers
> by offering such products as online bill-paying and bill-delivery.
> "We are targeting the bank customer," said Peter Thiel, president
> of PayPal.com, an Internet start-up that began offering its own e-mail
> payment service last fall. "Eventually we envision rolling into a full
> financial services company, offering checking accounts and savings
> accounts."
> Last week, PayPal.com said it would merge with rival X.com Corp. to
> create a company with 700,000 users. Like many Internet firms, the
> companies have been sacrificing profits to build market share quickly,
> offering its service at no charge and giving away $10 bonuses to
> first-time users.
> But Bank One officials say their size and experience in handling
> money will give them an advantage, particularly as consumers become more
> concerned about the security and privacy of online transactions.
> "Knowing that a large bank is involved instantly gives the service
> a level of credibility that a normal Web site wouldn't have," said Dean
> Lehman, senior vice president at Bank One.
> But PayPal's Thiel said banks lack the skills and creativity to
> excel online. "Banks have failed abysmally in most of their attempts to
> enter the Internet space," he said.
> * * *
> The Check's In The E-Mail
> Bank One launched a new Internet service Wednesday that allows
> consumers to pay one another online. Here's how it works:
> * * *
> Sender
> 1. Registers at eMoneyMail Web site by providing name and e-mail
> address.
> 2. Provides credit card, debit card or checking account number and
> enters amount to be paid. (Credit and debit card transactions occur
> immediately; checking account withdrawals take up to four business
> days.)
> 3. Enters e-mail address of recipient; agrees to $1 fee.
> 4. Clicks send.
> * * *
> Recipient
> 1. Opens e-mail and links to eMoneyMail Web site.
> 2. Directs money to credit card, debit card or checking account;
> money is transferred at no charge.
> 3. To receive a printed check in mail, recipients must pay $1.


When I have a vision for my life, money is then a tool to make the vision a reality. If I have no vision for my life, then money is in fact the only way I can gauge my worth. -- The Reverend Dan Matthews

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