What is an Electronic Wallet?
An electronic wallet or e-wallet (also called a digital wallet) is a software-based financial account that stores important payment information of users, including passwords used for different payment methods. An e-wallet has slowly replaced the traditional payment method of marking purchases, especially online goods, and services.
E-Wallets function through a Near Field Communication (NFC) Technology that exchanges data through a contactless method provided that the other device is also NFC equipped.
When thinking about e-wallets, people might have no idea that the apps they have downloaded on their smartphones are e-wallets. International e-wallets are Paypal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, etc. Examples of e-wallet brands in the Philippines are GCash, Paymaya, Coins PH, Grab Pay, Moneygment, Paypal, DragonPay, Cliqq, and Lazada Wallet. With an e-wallet, users will conveniently pay for products online. In addition, users can simply transfer money from their banks to their e-wallets and immediately start using them for their services.
E-wallets are easy to use – users only need their smartphones and an internet connection to start registration. Once users have signed up, they can transfer money to their e-wallets and use it to pay for products and services.
Why Should You Consider Signing Up for an E-Wallet?
Virtual wallets function just like bank debit or credit cards. It presents a lot of opportunities to transact conveniently. Among the many things that e-wallets provide are the following:
- Pay utilities online
- Book tickets (movies or air tickets)
- Pay for foods ordered online
- Transfer money from your e-wallet to another person’s e-wallet or even bank accounts
- Pay for goods or services ordered in physical stores or online shopping sites
Digital payment solutions have consistently evolved over the years, with more people already preferring the digital payment method. It saves a lot of time for people who are very busy with work and would want to spend more time with their families rather than waiting in line to pay for their utilities or decreasing the need for carrying cash with them all the time.
Pros and Cons of E-Wallets
Signing up for anything will always have its advantages and disadvantages. Those who are looking at signing up for a digital wallet will have to weigh in whether or not the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.
Among the many pros and cons, here are the following:
- Online Wallets provide convenience by allowing users to save time in traveling and waiting.
- E-wallet apps in the Philippines provide safety. Users no longer have to carry cash to complete transactions. As a result, there is no longer a need to worry about wallets getting lost or finding out they are short of cash.
- Online Wallets provide a lot of payment options for their users. As e-wallets evolved, so did digital payments.
- Transaction costs are a lot cheaper with e-wallets, especially when sending money to relatives. Users will discover that they can save money on fees.
- Risk of Cyber Attacks. Online Scammers are numerous, and they’re out to pick on individuals with little expertise about digital wallets. Users will need to be careful when giving out personal information and ensuring that they’re dealing with a reputable organization.
- Some merchants do not accept e-wallet payments yet. While a significant number of establishments have already adapted to this new payment method, some still do not. So you still have to end up paying cash.
- E-wallet payments are not reversible. This means that if you send money to the wrong person or if your e-wallet company goes bankrupt, you will lose your money forever.
- Theft. Just like with physical wallets, digital wallets can be stolen if you’re not careful. If you lose your phone or have it stolen, your e-wallet will be gone as well.
- Hacking. If a hacker gains access to your e-wallet, they can take all of your money.
Differences and Similarities of Digital and Conventional Payment Methods
- Whether the payment method is done digitally or in a conventional manner, there is a trade of products and services. by paying with cash or using an e-wallet
- Both payment methods require customer interaction, and a sale does not just happen by visiting websites and clicking on orders. There is also a level of communication needed regardless of how the payment will be made.
- Marketing and advertising are required. People will not know whether merchants exist without advertising what they offer.
- Traditional banking or payment methods require cash, cards (debit or credit), or checks. E-Wallets only require an app that can be downloaded through the user’s smartphone and tap it up by transferring cash from their linked bank account.
- Payment through cards or checks does not always reflect in the merchant’s account in real-time because clearing may take some time. However, payments made through e-wallets are instantly transferred due to NFC technology.
- Customers will have to physically visit the merchant shop and complete the sale using traditional payment methods. With e-wallet payments, customers can either visit the physical shop and make the payment through an e-wallet or complete the sale online.
- Getting access to credit cards will not be easy for some because of strict requirements and eligibility criteria. On the other hand, anybody with a smartphone and an internet connection can sign up for an e-wallet.
How to Open an E-Wallet
When it comes to choosing which e-wallet to use, there are several factors that individuals should consider. The usefulness of the digital wallet, how user-friendly the application is, and the security it provides are all important considerations.
When talking about usefulness, the user must check what services these digital wallets offer and if most of them are needed. For example, some e-wallet services in the Philippines may have more benefits than others.
The simplicity of use is essential because online wallets make users’ lives easier. Complicated apps do not entice people to use them, and they will continue making payments the conventional way.
Most people are concerned about privacy and security, which users consider before deciding. People want the assurance that their personal information is protected and that the app is not easily compromised. After all, they entrusted their money to digital wallets where it has a value equivalent to cash, debit cards, or credit cards.
Once you have considered the things mentioned above, you can follow the steps below to download most of the e-wallets:
- Most e-wallet apps are available for download through the Google Play store for android smartphones or the App Store for ios smartphones. Therefore, users can directly download these apps to start the registration process.
- Once downloaded, the registration step will require basic personal information such as name, email ID, contact #, and address. Often, a user account also has to be created, and the user will need to provide a username and password or PIN.
- When the PIN is set, a One Time Password (OTP) is sent to the user’s registered mobile number to authenticate the process. Then, each time the user logs in or opens their e-wallet app, they will only be required to enter their PIN.
- E-Wallet apps in the Philippines will require that a user’s bank be linked to transfer funds between their accounts. However, some e-wallets do not necessarily require bank accounts to be linked because money transfers can be done from other payment centers such as through 7-Eleven and other payment merchants.
- When users have enough money in their e-wallet, they can begin using their digital wallets to pay for several services available through the app. They can save time and conveniently pay anywhere at any time of the day.
What Should I Do if My Mobile Device Which Carries the E-Wallet App is Stolen?
Your smartphone contains more critical data and information than any other device. Most of the time, it also includes your bank information, passwords, and your e-wallet account. When compromised, your personal data will be easily accessible to perpetrators and can drain your e-wallet of its funds.
When you lose your smartphone, the first thing that you must do is use your computer or borrow another smartphone and log in to your account and change your password or pin. If needed, you must also contact the e-wallet customer support to block or suspend your account.
Another option that users can choose is to call their mobile service provider and block their mobile phone number so that other people cannot send a request for an OTP. Unfortunately, most e-wallet apps only require an OTP to access the account, and if the smartphone with the e-wallet also receives the OTP, it can compromise the user’s account.
List of E-Wallet Companies
Below is a list of some of the well-known e-wallet apps used in the Philippines. Many are already using these apps to make online transactions, and some small businesses even include these e-wallet apps in their payment methods.
Paymaya is a financial and digital payments app in the Philippines that helps its users to make purchases online, load up their mobile phones conveniently, and transact with merchant stores in malls and pawnshops nationwide.
Paymaya is regulated by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) and has been recognized as the World’s Best Online Payment Solution at the 9th Emerging Payments Awards in London, the United Kingdom in 2016.
Users who have an account with Paymaya have access to the following:
- Shop Online
- Stream Music
- Book Flights
- Pay Bills
- Buy Games
- Send Remittances
- Buy Ticket
Coins.ph is a fintech company that allows anyone to have easy and convenient access to financial services through their phone even if they do not have a bank account. This app enables many Filipinos to perform cashless transactions as if they are transacting the traditional way of payments.
Services available for Coins.ph users include the following:
- Mobile Payments
- Digital Currency
- Business Solutions
Grabpay is a mobile wallet that allows its users to make cashless payments within the Grab app for Grab Services.
With Grabpay, users will be able to do the following:
- Pay for Grab rides, GrabFood, and Grab Express
- Pay for purchases in partner stores
- Pay for purchases in partner sites and apps
- Pay bills instantly from the Grab app
- Buy prepaid mobile load from the Grab app
- Free transfer to any local banks or another GrabPay wallet
Moneygment is a mobile app that aims to serve unbanked Filipinos, self-employed individuals, small and medium businesses, and OFWs with financial solutions and services. The Moneygment is available for ios and android smartphone users.
The features of Moneygment include:
- Payment for government services (PAG-IBIG, SSS, and Philhealth)
- Pay bills online
- Apply for a loan
- Avail insurance
- Pay for loans and services
- Send Money
Paypal is a popular mobile wallet and is known globally. With Paypal, businesses can create their merchant accounts, send payments locally or internationally, and pay for products and services online. Paypal is one of the most secure e-wallets with 24/7 monitoring against fraud and buyer protection, and users are secured in the knowledge that they can freely do their transactions online.
Personal services include:
- Payment for online shopping and send payments
- Send payments for work done
Business services include:
- Accept Payments
- Make Payments
Dragonpay has been in the Philippines for more than a decade, offering users a secure digital platform to transact online. Their establishment was a response to the growing need of Filipinos – both individuals and businesses, especially those who are unbanked, to have an alternate payment channel.
- Online Payment Solutions
- Recurring Payments for bills payment
- The mass payout for sending money to multiple individuals at once
Cliqq Wallet is a form of digital wallet that users can download through the Google Play and Apple Store and start using it to pay for items bought at any 7-Eleven stores or when shopping online at Cliqq grocery. Users can also send and receive Cliqq wallet credits and earn rewards points each time they use Cliqq Wallet.
The vision of GCash is to build a cashless ecosystem where people can go about their lives without needing to carry cash with them all the time but instead use their mobile wallets to pay for goods and services. This app is slowly becoming true in the country – where people ask a merchant, big or small – whether they can pay through GCash.
- Book Movies
- Buy Load
- Game Credits
- GForest (switch to green activities)
- GSave (creating a savings account tie-up with CIMB Bank)
- GLife (shop for your favorite brands in one super life app)
- KKB (split bill with friends)
- Pay Bills
- Pay QR
- Request Money
- Send: Gift, Money, with a Clip
- Shop Online
- Bank Transfer
- GCash Padala
- GGives (buy now pay later)
- GCash Pera Outlet
- Invest Money
- Save Money
Lazada is one of the Philippines’ biggest online shopping sites. Within Lazada, users of the Lazada app can activate and use the Lazada wallet, where users have the option to cash in and add money to their e-wallet, which they can then use to make purchases in the Lazada shopping site.
Popular Reasons for Filipinos to Open an E-Wallet Account
While many are apprehensive about opening an e-wallet account because they are worried about the safety and security of having their financial data digitally available, there are very sound reasons why Filipinos should start opening an e-wallet account. More than the convenience, it is the usefulness that it provides that can significantly help many Filipinos go about in their daily lives.
Many Bill Payments Partners
Traditional payments for bills require waiting in the queue for a considerably long time, depending on how many people pay on the same due date as you. This process also includes withdrawing money in advance before going to the merchant shop and paying your bills.
Now, e-wallet apps allow people to pay for their bills through their services within the app. This app saves time for many people, especially since they can complete bills payment with just a few taps on their smartphones without leaving the comfort of their homes or offices.
Allows Users to Receive Remittances
In remittance centers, Filipinos who receive money from their family members often line up. The disadvantage is that these remittance centers operate more than simply sending and receiving cash. They also provide a variety of services, which means more people flock to them and end up spending a lot of time.
Users may simply enter the reference number and other information via an app such as Paymaya, and then click on receive. A confirmation of receipt of cash will be delivered to the user via an SMS afterwards.
Users Can Choose Top Up Method
E-wallets, which are often known as virtual or electronic wallets, allow users to store, send, and receive money. Because most Filipinos do not have a traditional bank account to connect the e-wallet app, many people are hesitant to sign up for an e-wallet. The good news is that establishing bank accounts isn’t always necessary. Other options, such as pawn shops, convenience stores, and even mall service centers, will be able to give you this service.
Major Establishments Are Accepting E-Wallets as a Payment Method
With more businesses allowing consumers to pay using e-wallets, the number of individuals using this payment method will grow. The fact is that, as more companies allow this payment option, people will be attracted to use e-wallets. It’s not always the safest thing to carry a lot of money with you.
Option to Pay for Government Payments and Taxes
Spending almost all day at government offices just to pay taxes and other government contributions can be exhausting to anyone. Business owners and self-employed individuals need to fill up so much paperwork and waiting in line is a lot of work. Thanks to e-wallets, they need not have to get time off their businesses but can make payments anytime and anywhere.
Tips for the New E-Wallet User
You may still have concerns about the security and privacy of your data if you’re a new e-wallet user. However, there are methods for you to safeguard your information and see whether anything unusual happens in your e-wallet account.
Make Sure Your Password and PIN is Highly Secure
When creating passwords, make sure to mix letters, numbers, and special characters, making it difficult for hackers to access your account. Do not choose predictable number combinations like birthdays. As much as possible, make your password and PIN difficult for others to hack but easy for you to remember.
Do Not Share Passwords or PIN With Anyone
Your password and PIN are not meant to be shared with anyone. Giving someone else access to your e-wallet account this way means you’re giving them complete control over it. They can cash in, pay bills, move money around, and so on.
Keep Track of All Your Transactions
When you make all your payments through your e-wallet, you could lose track of your spending. Sometimes, there could be charges in your e-wallet account that you have not done or authorized. It will not be easy to spot these expenses, especially if you have a lot of transactions, so you should regularly review your e-wallet account statement.
Be Cautious in Providing Personal Information
Some e-wallet brands are not legitimate. Before downloading any e-wallet apps and providing your personal information, especially your bank details, be sure to verify everything.
Keep Your Budgeting On Track
Whichever payment method you prefer, your budgeting must still be on track. That means that you must still have sufficient control over how you manage your money. E-wallets will have a lot of exciting promos through their partner brands, and it is easy to spend on your favorite items without knowing that you are already overspending.
Frequently asked questions
What Is a Blockchain Wallet?
A blockchain wallet functions the same way as e-wallets except that it is mainly used for managing different kinds of cryptocurrencies for its users. Examples of cryptocurrencies include bitcoin, ether, and other cryptocurrencies.
What Is an e-Wallet payment?
E-wallet payment is a type of payment for bills, services, purchases, or others that are completed through the electronic wallet account of the user. This form of payment is completely cashless and is done through the use of smartphones, computers, or other types of electronic devices.
What types of e-wallet are in the market?
There are 4 known types of e-wallets in the market: emoney wallets, blockchain or crypto wallets, mobile wallets, and IoT-Based Wallets.
Digital Wallets / E-Money Wallets
This is the most common type of e-wallet that people refer to all the time. They are typically web applications used for payments done online and storing of digital money.
Crypto Wallets are mainly used for the transactions of users for their cryptocurrencies.
Mobile Wallets are classified as either hot wallets or cold wallets. Hot wallets need to be connected to the internet for it to work while cold wallets need not be connected. They are installed on the mobile phone of the user and are typically used for point of sale transactions, usually for NFC technology.
An IoT-Based Wallet is attached to the Internet of Things (IoT) devices and allows users to make purchases directly from there.
What is electronic money?
Electronic money is considered a form of currency and one that is stored in electronic devices. Simply put, it is the opposite of coin money or paper money – it is the electronic alternative.
What is an online payment?
Online payments are payments done over the internet for goods and services purchased. The presence of face-to-face transactions is eliminated and all transactions are done cashless and paperless.
What is electronic currency?
Electronic currency is also known as digital or virtual currency. This type of currency only exists in digital form – stored in electronic devices but can be used for payments just like the normal currencies.
What is the best e-wallet in the Philippines?
The Philippines provides many of the trusted and reliable e-wallets present in the market today. Among the best e-wallets that Filipinos can download and sign up for include PayMaya, Coins.PH, GrabPay, Moneygment, Paypal, Dragonpay, Cliqq, GCash, and Lazada Wallet.
Why should I use an e-wallet?
E-wallets offer convenience and a real-time saver. Those who have an e-wallet account find themselves transacting with merchants and their loved ones better and faster. Because they have a lot of tie-ups with merchants, they are also able to save users a lot on transaction fees.
It’s no surprise that e-wallets have become the preferred payment option of Filipinos. Business and personal transactions have become considerably simpler because contactless, cashless, and paperless payment methods are introduced. The numerous services and partner businesses that customers may choose from to make purchases are just a few of the benefits of e-wallets.