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Paytouch lets your fingerprints make purchases, hopes to expand into Europe and America next year

Darren Murph
04.25.13
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The business of commerce is alive and well, and while there's far too much noise for anyone to stand on the mobile side, Paytouch is hoping to add a new wrinkle on the conventional end. The Barcelona-based outfit was on hand here at The Next Web Conference, showcasing its biometric payment terminal and setting the stage for what's to come. For those unfamiliar, the Paytouch terminal is currently being used at Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel -- users with a Paytouch account simply link their credit card to their fingerprints, and a two-finger press is all it takes to order another glass of sangria. The benefits are fairly obvious for all parties involved. For the consumer, there's no longer a need to carry a credit card that can be skimmed, lost or stolen; for the retailer, it's able to encourage impulse buying in an entirely new way; for Paytouch, there's a commission paid on each purchase.

Gallery: Paytouch biometric payment terminal hands-on | 11 Photos

We spoke to Virginia Iranzo-Diaz, the company's marketing and communications manager, as well as CEO Javier Paso about the startup's immediate plans for growth. As of now, it's hoping to sneak Paytouch terminals into supermarkets, petrol stations and other retailers in Spain within the next few months, but there's apt to be a pause after that. "We're hoping to have more deals in place by the end of the year," said Paso, "but we need additional funding for additional infrastructure so we can assure excellent service."

Paso also confessed that he started this company by thinking local, but after launching at a single hotel in Ibiza, he's seen more international interest than anything else. So much, in fact, that it's now become a top priority for the outfit, and it's looking to open up four more offices across Europe and America within the next year or so. Interestingly, one of the biggest requests has been to simply integrate the biometric aspect into existing payment terminals; in other words, don't be surprised to see a second-generation Paytouch support NFC payments as well as conventional card swipes.

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