Slideshow 10 of Amazon's Hits and Misses in Digital Payments

  • February 06 2015, 2:28pm EST
11 Images Total is a savvy and influential company in the e-commerce world, but its efforts in payments have been less consistent. It has significantly changed the way people redeem rewards and shop on third-party sites, but it has proven less successful in person-to-person payments and the mobile point of sale. (Image: iStock)

Spending Rewards

The rewards card, issued by JPMorgan Chase, originally required users to request a mailed certificate with a digital redemption code printed on it. To eliminate this clunky process, Chase built new technology into its core processing platform to enable it to treat reward points like a credit transaction. (Image: iStock)

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Amazon Coins

Amazon's virtual currency is an undercurrent of the company's digital content offerings. It's used to provide credit for free games and movies to purchasers of Amazon Fire devices, but it has never expanded to the purchase of physical goods.


Amazon's Fire phone wasn't popular with consumers, but it provided a glimpse into the future of mobile commerce. The handset's camera and mic could sense any object or media in its presence and order it on — whether it's a jar of Nutella or a single episode of the Sopranos. (Image: Bloomberg News)

Amazon Wallet

Amazon never made clear what its plans were for this wallet app, which could store prepaid cards but didn't have the kind of built-in payment capability sported by rival products like Apple Pay or Google Wallet. The company removed the beta app in January. (Image: Shutterstock)

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Login and Pay with Amazon

This service, built on the services Amazon already extends to other e-commerce sellers, enables shoppers to use their Amazon credentials as an alternative to creating a new account with a lesser-known merchant. (Image: iStock)

'Local Register'

Amazon's answer to Square was criticized early on for lacking integration with other merchant services. But the Local Register card reader's ultra-low fees may overcome merchants' misgivings. (Image: iStock)

Birthday Cards

A product called Amazon Birthday Gift, launched in 2013, enables customers to send virtual Amazon gift cards to friends on Facebook. The system allows other Facebook friends to add funds to the gift card before it is delivered to the recipient. (Image: iStock)

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Amazon tested the waters of person-to-person payments with WebPay, which it shuttered in October. The company decided it was "not addressing a customer pain point particularly better than anyone else," but added that the experience would inform future projects. (Image: Bloomberg News)

Pushing Past the Web

Amazon has deployed lockers, tested drones and reportedly eyed Radio Shack stores to push its distribution capabilities beyond the mail-order model. (Image: Bloomberg News)


Amazon extended its e-commerce presence to Twitter last year with the launch of #AmazonCart. The hashtag allows shoppers to add items to their shopping cart by sending a message over Twitter, but users must go to Amazon's website to complete the purchase. (Image: iStock)