Ticketless Authentication in Mass Transit

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Navigating the Future: The Innovative Role of Ticketless Authentication in Mass Transit

In the current urban mobility landscape, the importance of adopting ticketless authentication and proximity technology in mass transit cannot be overstated. Embedding innovative technologies for ticketless and contactless transactions is crucial for enhancing the efficiency, safety, and speed of public transportation systems. 

Traditional fare collection methods are becoming burdensome due to their high operational costs and the extensive workforce required. While some transit systems are evolving into smarter urban landscapes, others are fighting an expensive, losing battle. 

For example, L.A. Metro deployed 300 ambassadors in 2023 to assist with fare collection and enhance security in the transit system. Similarly, a few years ago, the New York Metro Transit Authority began expanding its staff, adding 500 security officers to tackle issues related to fare evasion and assaults, with plans to continue expanding their team by over 100 new fare-focused staff members annually.

These instances starkly illustrate the drawbacks of traditional fare systems—both inefficient and resource-intensive. Yet, there are promising alternatives like ticketless proximity-based technologies that smart cities can use to streamline passenger flow and reduce the extensive staffing requirements for fare collection. Let’s explore how we got to this point and how ticketless authentication can anchor innovative initiatives in mass transit.

TLDR; Key Takeaways

  • Ticketless authentication is set to transform mass transit, offering unparalleled convenience and security.
  • Versatile proximity technology like ultrasonic verification is crucial for global adoption and usage of ticketless systems.
  • Successful global implementations showcase the potential and benefits of transitioning to ticketless travel.
  • Addressing challenges like privacy, security, and accessibility is crucial for widespread adoption.
  • The future of public transport ticketing lies in embracing ticketless solutions and emerging technologies.

The Shift Towards Ticketless Travel

To grasp how innovations like data-over-sound can revolutionize public transit— like minimizing physical interactions and optimizing fare processing to make systems more sustainable and user-friendly— we must first understand the evolution of these technologies. 

Urban mobility has seen a dramatic transformation over the past decade as transit systems worldwide shift towards ticketless travel. Driven by today’s tech-savvy commuters’ demand for more streamlined, efficient, and contactless experiences, this transition is reshaping how we navigate urban environments, making public transportation more accessible, convenient, and faster than ever before.

The Evolution of Mass Transit Ticketing

Mass transit ticketing has transitioned from paper tickets to tokens, then magnetic stripes to smart cards for decades. Today, we’re witnessing the next global shift: the move towards completely ticketless systems, where digital authentication methods replace physical tokens. This shift reflects a necessary adaptation to the growing demands of increased passenger volumes, prompting a reevaluation and reprioritization of accessibility and efficiency in transit operations.

Historically, mass transit systems relied heavily on paper tickets and tokens, which presented numerous challenges, including long queues, lost tickets, and significant operational overheads. With the introduction of smart cards, followed by NFC, RFID, and data-over-sound technologies, transit systems began to see improvements in operational efficiency and passenger satisfaction. The push towards ticketless systems has been driven by the need to enhance these aspects further, increasing security and reducing costs associated with fare collection, which traditionally could consume 10 to 15 percent of revenue.

Drivers Behind the Adoption of Ticketless Systems

The push towards ticketless travel is driven by the demand for more efficient, secure, and convenient transportation solutions. Factors such as the need to reduce physical contact points, especially in a post-pandemic world, and the desire to streamline the passenger experience have accelerated the adoption of ticketless systems.

Proximity Technology at the Forefront

At the heart of the ticketless travel revolution lies proximity technology, a pivotal innovation setting new standards for convenience and security in mass transit. Technologies like ultrasonic proximity verification are being leveraged to create seamless, contactless interactions between passengers and transit systems, heralding a new era of smart urban mobility where efficiency and user experience are paramount.

How Proximity-Based Ticketing Systems Work

Proximity-based ticketing systems leverage technologies like ultrasonic verification to authenticate passengers. By emitting high-frequency sound waves detectable by smartphones, these systems enable contactless entry and exit, making the boarding process faster and more secure.

Here’s how it typically works:

  • Token Generation. The user’s device generates an ultrasonic signal that acts as a secure token.
  • Signal Transmission. This token is transmitted when the device proximity is detected by an ultrasonic reader at the transit gate upon entry.
  • Authentication and Access. The reader authenticates the token and grants access, all within milliseconds, ensuring no delay in passenger flow.

The Advantages of Contactless Authentication

Contactless authentication through proximity technology offers numerous benefits, including reduced boarding times, minimized risk of fare evasion, and decreased operational costs related to ticket issuance and processing.

Advantage #1- Streamlining the Passenger Journey

Ultrasonic technology significantly speeds up the boarding process by eliminating the need for physical ticket checks or card swipes. Passengers benefit from a smooth, uninterrupted journey with minimal wait times at gates, enhancing the overall user experience.

Advantage #2: Boosting Security with Contactless Solutions

With its capability to enhance secure data transmission, ultrasonic technology augments existing systems to reduce the risk of fraud and ticket forgery. This advanced level of security is crucial for maintaining the integrity of the transit system and building passenger trust.

Imagine the Possibilities: Proximity Solutions for Identity Authentication, Ticketing, and Boarding

In urban mobility, the potential for proximity technology to transform mass transit extends far beyond current applications, inviting us to envision a future where every aspect of the passenger experience is enhanced. Here are some scenarios where ultrasonic proximity verification and other proximity solutions can redefine identity authentication, ticketing, and boarding processes.

Proximity to Verify Passenger Identity

Ultrasonic proximity verification offers a powerful tool for augmenting security and personalizing the passenger experience. This technology securely transmits data packets, including unique credentials like ticket IDs and personal identifiers, along with additional information, such as timestamps, over short distances.

Imagine passengers approaching transit gates or terminals, where their presence is detected and authenticated seamlessly through transit systems via ultrasonic waves. These sensors interact with mobile devices, carrying secure data packets confirming the passenger’s identity without physical contact or manual input.

 This capability enhances accessibility while enriching the passenger experience. From streamlining entry to customizing the transit environment based on individual preferences, transit systems can use this data to tailor services such as route suggestions and environmental settings, creating a journey uniquely aligned with each passenger’s needs.

Transition to Ticketless Travel

Ultrasonic and other proximity technologies are catalysts for digital transformation, driving the shift toward ticketless travel and enabling a seamless, efficient boarding process without physical tickets. With ultrasonic technology, a passenger’s smartphone emits an ultrasonic signal with a packet that can be decoded to determine proximity and fare details as they pass through entry points. The transit system’s sensors receive and decode these signals to verify the fare without any physical interaction of swiping a manual paper ticket, akin to a digital handshake.

Ticketless travel, when authenticated through ultrasonic methods, drastically reduces the need for traditional fare collection methods that rely on online connectivity. It also supports environmental sustainability by reducing the need for paper-based tickets and maintaining physical infrastructure for ticket handling.

Innovations in Mass Transit System Boarding

Ultrasonic proximity technology can also enhance how passengers board mass transit systems, making the process faster and more efficient. Equipped with ultrasonic sensors, transit vehicles can detect and authenticate passengers automatically as they board. As soon as passengers step onto a bus or train, their presence is detected via data-over-sound technology, and their journey is validated without needing to physically interact with a ticket reader.

Furthermore, ultrasonic proximity data can be integrated with dynamic routing and scheduling systems. Vehicles could adjust their routes based on real-time data about passenger locations and destinations, optimizing transit network efficiency and improving service reliability and passenger satisfaction.

Overcome Challenges in Implementing Ticketless Systems

While the benefits of ticketless systems are clear, their implementation comes with its own set of challenges. From technical hurdles and privacy concerns to ensuring accessibility for all users, transit authorities have numerous options to navigate these issues to bring the advantages of ticketless travel to their passengers.

While ticketless systems offer enhanced security, they also raise privacy concerns. Protecting passengers’ data and maintaining transparency in data usage is paramount for gaining public trust.

Accessibility also remains a critical consideration. Implementing ticketless systems and processes that are accessible, inclusive, and easy to use for all passengers, including those without smartphones or with disabilities, is essential for universal adoption.

The Future Landscape of Public Transport Ticketing

Looking ahead, the future of public transport ticketing is poised for further innovation and transformation. Emerging trends and technologies likely to shape the next generation of mass transit systems are either addressing the continued evolution of ticketless authentication or solving for more advanced integration needs of advanced data analytics, AI, and IoT solutions to create even smarter, more personalized travel experiences.

Predictions for Ticketless Authentication Adoption

The adoption of ticketless authentication in mass transit is expected to accelerate, driven by technological advancements and a growing emphasis on enhancing the passenger experience.

Emerging Technologies in Transit Ticketing

The integration of AI, IoT, and blockchain with ticketless systems could further revolutionize public transport ticketing, offering even greater efficiency, security, and personalization.

Conclusion: The Path Forward for Mass Transit Systems

The journey towards ticketless mass transit has challenges, yet the potential benefits far outweigh the hurdles.  Proximity solutions can profoundly impact mass transit systems by making them more efficient, secure, and tailored to individual needs, paving the way for a new era of personalized urban travel. 

Predictions for Ticketless Authentication Adoption

As urban centers continue to grow and seek efficient transit solutions, the adoption of ticketless and proximity-based systems is expected to accelerate. This will likely encourage broader integrations with city-wide mobility services, contributing to the creation of more cohesive and sustainable urban transport ecosystems. The potential for these systems to enhance data analytics and personalization of services promises a future where mass transit is easier to use and more responsive to individual and communal needs.

Emerging Technologies in Transit Ticketing

The horizon for mass transit systems is vibrant with emerging technologies. Innovations like blockchain for secure transaction processing, AI for predictive analytics on passenger flows, and IoT integrations for enhanced service management are all set to play pivotal roles. These technologies will support the continuous improvement of ticketless systems, ensuring they remain adaptive to the evolving demands of modern urban life.

Integrating such advanced systems will likely see mass transit evolve into a more personalized, efficient, and secure mode of transportation. As highlighted by recent studies, the use of digital platforms and services in the travel sector has seen significant growth, with a nearly 30% increase in daily engagement with local transport apps. This trend indicates the increasing reliance on and acceptance of digital solutions in everyday commuting and travel planning.

The future of public transport ticketing is being shaped today by the advancement of ticketless and proximity-based technologies. These solutions offer significant potential to transform how cities manage and integrate various modes of transportation. As these technologies mature and gain wider acceptance, the future landscape of public transport ticketing looks promising, with a clear path toward more connected, intelligent, and user-friendly transit experiences. Embracing these innovations will be crucial for transit authorities aiming to meet the expectations of a modern, mobile-first population while managing the operational challenges of tomorrow’s urban environments.

As mass transit systems evolve, the integration of ticketless authentication and proximity technology will play a critical role in shaping a more efficient and user-centric future for public transportation. These systems offer a compelling blueprint for a smarter, safer, and more sustainable transit network, driving forward the broader goals of urban mobility and accessibility.

Fraud in Mobility

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Secure the Future: 3 Strategies to Combat Fraud in Mobility with Ultrasonic Technology

The rise of digital technologies has been a double-edged sword in urban mobility. While offering unprecedented convenience and efficiency, it has opened new avenues for fraud, challenging operators and passengers alike. 

A recent study by Biocatch highlighted a notable increase in mobile device-related fraud, climbing from 47% of reported incidents in 2022 to 61% in 2023. As financial services become increasingly reliant on digital platforms, the exposure to fraudulent activities multiplies, threatening the financial bottom line, consumer trust, and the integrity of the mobility ecosystem.

Ultrasonic proximity verification technology is working to combat mobility security issues, setting new benchmarks in securing mobility services against fraudulent activities. This article explores three potent strategies employing ultrasonic technology to fortify mobility services, offering insights into their mechanisms, benefits, and real-world applications.

TLDR; Key Takeaways

  • Ultrasonic technology offers a robust solution to combat fraud in mobility services.
  • Key strategies include enhancing ticket verification, securing contactless payments, and protecting data privacy.
  • Real-world applications demonstrate significant improvements in security and passenger satisfaction.

The Challenge of Fraud in Modern Mobility Systems

The digital transformation in the  mobility sector has significantly improved service delivery and escalated fraudulent schemes’ risks and impacts.

The sophistication of fraudulent schemes cannot be understated. They range from simple fare evasion to complex cyber-attacks targeting sensitive user data, each carrying significant repercussions for mobility providers. 

This evolution of threats requires a correspondingly advanced approach to security—a challenge many in the sector grapple with. 

As fraudsters become more sophisticated, the demand for innovative and effective security solutions has never been more critical.  Traditional methods are no longer sufficient to keep up with the pace of escalating threats; advanced technologies like ultrasonic verification are essential to curb the escalating incidents of fraud.

The Cost of Fraud to Operators and Passengers

Fraudulent activities in mobility lead to substantial financial losses for operators and compromise passenger trust and safety, undermining the integrity of transportation systems.

The stakes are high; single breach can erode years of built-up trust and loyalty, making fraud prevention both a technical issue and a core business imperative.

The Need for Advanced Security Solutions

While the digitization of mobility services has undeniably opened up new avenues for convenience and efficiency, it has also amplified the scope and scale of potential fraud, making it a pressing concern that demands innovative solutions.

As we explore the strategies to combat this growing challenge, the role of advanced technologies like ultrasonic proximity verification becomes increasingly pivotal, offering hope for a more secure and trustworthy mobility future.

Ultrasonic verification technology emerges as a formidable deterrent against fraud. It utilizes high-frequency sound waves for secure, contactless data transmission, offering a new layer of security that is difficult to breach.

3 Strategies to Address Fraud in Mobility

Combating fraud presents a persistent challenge in mobility. With over 131 million users on Uber alone, there are nearly limitless opportunities for fraudsters to game the system.

As services diversify and digital transactions become more prevalent, the need for innovative and effective fraud prevention strategies has never been more critical. One example modality to address this is ultrasonic proximity verification—a cutting-edge solution that offers a new frontier in safeguarding mobility services against fraudulent activities.

By leveraging the unique properties of ultrasonic signal transmission, mobility providers can enhance security across ticketing, payments, and data transfers, setting a new standard for trust and safety in the sector.

Strategy 1: Enhance Ticket Verification Processes

The first line of defense against fraud in mobility services begins with the ticket verification process. Traditional methods are increasingly vulnerable to sophisticated fraud techniques, but introducing ultrasonic signals for ticket verification represents a transformative approach.

Implement Ultrasonic Signals for Secure Boarding

The goal of integrating ultrasonic signals into the boarding process is fundamentally about transforming the passenger experience within urban transit systems. Facing growing challenges with validating tickets and combating rising ticket fraud incidents, mobility providers face a pressing need to implement a security measure that is both effective and unobtrusive. The aim is to provide a layer of security that passengers might not even notice, yet significantly improves the integrity of the ticketing process and enriches their journey through seamless and secure access.

Impact on Passenger Throughput and Satisfaction

Introducing ultrasonic technology into ticket verification significantly impacts passenger throughput and satisfaction. By facilitating faster, secure boarding, passengers experience less waiting and more reliable service, directly translating to an improved perception of urban mobility. The streamlined process, free from the hassles of traditional ticketing methods, leads to a transit experience that passengers are more likely to use repeatedly and recommend to others.

The Solution: Streamlined Boarding with Ultrasonic Proximity Verification

Imagine a world where the hassle of boarding urban transit is a thing of the past, thanks to the marvels of ultrasonic proximity verification. Picture this innovative technology deployed across transit systems, transforming the boarding experience into an effortless, swift process. In this deployment, the familiar bottlenecks during rush hours dissolve, as passengers can now glide through entry points with ultrasonic ease. This seamless boarding elevates operational efficiency for transit authorities. It fundamentally enriches the passenger experience, cultivating a sense of loyalty and appreciation for public transit that naturally encourages increased usage and growth.

Strategy 2: Secure Contactless Payments

As contactless payments become the norm in mobility services, securing these transactions against fraud is paramount. Ultrasonic technology provides a robust solution by offering a new layer of protection for contactless payment authentication.

Leverage Ultrasonic for Payment Authentication

The primary aim of deploying ultrasonic technology for payment authentication is to balance the dual benefits of enhancing security measures while maintaining a frictionless user experience. This strategy is rooted in creating a fail-safe mechanism that deters fraud and introduces a level of security sophistication unmatched by conventional methods. 

Impact of Reducing Payment Frauds and Chargebacks

The introduction of ultrasonic technology can mitigate risks associated with payment fraud and chargebacks. By providing real-time, secure transaction authentication, data-over-sound proximity technology significantly diminishes the occurrence of unauthorized financial activities, instilling a robust sense of security among users. The resultant trust and confidence fostered in the user base are instrumental in promoting the adoption of digital payments within transit systems and solidifying mobility services’ reputation as safe and reliable.

The Solution: Ultrasonic-Enabled Secure Contactless Payments in Action

Imagine a future where secure contactless payments in the mobility sector are seamlessly facilitated through the precision and reliability of ultrasonic proximity detection. In this envisioned scenario, each transaction is swiftly authenticated with ultrasonic signals, invisible to the user yet impenetrable to fraudsters. This additional layer of security ensures that passengers can easily make payments, enjoying a frictionless experience without the anxiety of potential fraud. Meanwhile, mobility operators experience a notable decline in fraudulent transactions and chargebacks, bolstering their operational integrity and fostering a loyal customer base that values security and convenience above all.

Strategy 3: Data Security and Passenger Privacy

The security of data transfers in mobility services is critical. Ultrasonic technology encrypts data transfers between devices, enhancing the protection of sensitive information. 

Encrypt Data Transfers with Ultrasonic Technology

The paramount goal is harnessing ultrasonic technology to fortify the encryption of data transfers within the mobility sector, aiming to significantly reduce the vulnerabilities leading to data breaches and unauthorized access. Safeguarding sensitive passenger information must remain a top priority to demonstrate adherence to stringent global data protection standards and showcase mobility services’ unwavering commitment to maintaining the privacy and security of their passengers.

Impact of Building Trust Through Enhanced Privacy Measures

Implementing ultrasonic encryption to enhance data security and privacy marks a pivotal shift in how passenger trust is cultivated within the mobility ecosystem. This move to employ ultrasonic technology as the modality of choice can deliver a deep-seated commitment to protecting users’ privacy, thereby bolstering passenger confidence. Such a proactive stance on privacy measures safeguards users. It elevates their trust in digital mobility platforms, ensuring they feel secure that the latest technological advancements protect their data.

The Solution: Bringing Passenger Data Security to Life

Imagine a scenario where every piece of passenger data transmitted within a mobility system is cloaked in ultrasonic encryption, making it virtually impenetrable to outsiders. In this example, the encrypted transmission of personal and payment information via ultrasonic waves ensures complete data security, offering passengers peace of mind that their privacy is a policy and priority. This innovative approach redefines expectations for data protection in urban transit, fostering a relationship of trust and reliability between mobility providers and their users and establishing a new standard for privacy in the digital age.

Ultrasonic Verification as the Keystone of Secure Mobility

As we examine the mobility ecosystem, it’s clear that traditional security measures can benefit from advancements in detection and reduction technology. The dynamic nature of digital fraud demands equally dynamic solutions—ones that can anticipate and neutralize threats before they materialize. 

In this context, ultrasonic proximity verification emerges as a promising ally. With its unique ability to secure contactless transactions and data exchanges, this innovative technology offers a glimpse into a new frontier of fraud prevention tailored for the digital age of mobility.

Digital Transaction Fraud Prevention

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Strengthening Security: 3 Ultrasonic Strategies to Combat Digital Transaction Fraud

The digital landscape of 2023 witnessed an impressive leap, with over 1.3 trillion non-cash transactions conducted online, underscoring a vibrant era of digital commerce. This explosion in digital activity, while marking progress, also brings to light the critical need for advanced security solutions to protect against fraud. 

As the digital ecosystem evolves, so does the sophistication of threats, pushing the envelope for innovative defenses. 

Ultrasonic technology emerges as a beacon in this scenario, offering a sophisticated yet user-friendly solution to bolster fraud prevention and detection efforts in the payments ecosystem.

Ultrasonic strategies stand out for their ability to blend seamlessly into the user experience, offering robust authentication methods without disrupting the digital flow. By capitalizing on the unique properties of ultrasonic sound waves, the data-over-sound modality augments existing security, ensuring that every transaction is not just a transfer of funds but a statement of trust and safety. 

As we explore three pioneering ultrasonic approaches, we unveil a future where digital transaction security is not just reactive but proactively woven into the fabric of digital commerce, empowering businesses and consumers alike.

TLDR; Key Takeaways

  • Ultrasonic proximity verification emerges as a powerful tool against digital transaction fraud.
  • Fraud incident rates are rising, especially for digital wallets, experiencing as high as 150%+ increases in reported attacks.
  • Enhanced authentication, secure data transmission, and verified transaction integrity are key ultrasonic strategies that can impact digital transaction fraud.
  • LISNR’s Radius SDK and ToneLock feature offers unique solutions for augmenting transaction security.

The Rising Challenge of Digital Transaction Fraud

The growth of the digital economy has been paralleled by a rise in sophisticated fraud schemes targeting digital transactions. From phishing attacks to advanced persistent threats, cybercriminals’ methods are evolving, making traditional security measures increasingly ineffective.

In 2023 alone:

  • Global digital fraud toppled $48 billion – a 17% increase from $41 billion in 2022.
  • The average fraud loss sustained by U.S. businesses with assets over $5 billion was $3.8 million. 
  • Digital wallets experienced the highest increases in incidents of fraud, explicitly impacting Google Pay (153% increase), Samsung Pay (140%), and Apple Pay (81%).

The statistics are sobering; the increase in fraud signals an urgent need for innovative solutions that can adapt as quickly as the threats themselves.

While there are already layers in place at the merchant and business level that add value to the security chain, like proximity tokens, which are extremely valuable in the 2FA process, the rising number of fraud incidents highlights the need for augmentation to keep up with the pace of threats and misuse. 

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Ultrasonic Proximity Verification: A Frontier in Fraud Prevention

The necessity for advancements in fraud prevention has never been more pronounced. Traditional security measures, often designed to respond to threats rather than prevent them, expose businesses to cybercriminals’ continually advancing techniques. 

In comparison, ultrasonic proximity bypasses the reactive nature of traditional security, offering a proactive and dynamic approach to safeguard transactions. By freeing itself from the reliance on internet connectivity and physical hardware, it addresses and neutralizes potential threats ahead of their exploitation; data-over-sound can offer a significant shift towards anticipatory security practices for digital transactions.

Strategy #1: Enhance Authentication Security

One of the primary gateways for fraud in digital transactions is inadequate authentication. For digital wallet companies, strengthening authentication security is critical to protecting consumers’ financial assets and personal information from unauthorized access. Robust authentication mechanisms are foundational to building and maintaining trust with users, ensuring their transactions are guarded against potential fraudsters.

Authentication security safeguards the consumer’s interests and bolsters the company’s reputation as a reliable and secure platform for digital transactions. Enhanced authentication security is pivotal in attracting and retaining customers, serving as a competitive edge in the rapidly growing digital wallet market.

Challenge: Prevent Unauthorized Access

Despite layers of security, the key challenge in digital transactions will continue to be ensuring that only authorized users can initiate and complete transactions; this task is becoming more complicated every year due to the increasing sophistication of phishing and social engineering tactics. 

Existing tactics need to sufficiently counter this with technological solutions that are difficult for fraudsters to replicate or bypass. This exposes a need for more complexity in the transaction layer to add a significant hurdle for potential attackers, a formidable barrier against unauthorized access.

Ultrasonic Solution: SDK Tone Authentication

LISNR’s SDK offers a robust solution to tone authentication. By generating a secure, unique tone for each transaction, only devices authorized by the distinctive sound can proceed, significantly reducing the risk of unauthorized access. 

This creates a secure environment that adapts to the evolving landscape of digital fraud in the contactless authentication process.

Strategy #2: Secure Data Transmission

Data transmission security is paramount to every facet of the digital transaction process. The goal of secure data transmission is twofold: to protect sensitive consumer information during transactions and to uphold the integrity of the digital wallet platform. 

Data breaches can severely damage a company’s brand and consumer trust in digital commerce; implementing state-of-the-art data transmission security is non-negotiable for digital wallet businesses. It reinforces consumer confidence that financial details and personal data are encrypted and safely transmitted, reduces the risk of interception or manipulation by malicious actors, and fulfills regulatory compliance requirements.

Challenge: Mitigate Man-in-the-Middle Attacks

Man-in-the-middle attacks, where attackers intercept or alter communications between two parties, pose a significant risk to data integrity and confidentiality. 

These attacks are particularly nefarious because they can occur without the sender or the receiver being aware of the breach. Their invisibility makes them particularly challenging to detect and prevent, underscoring the need for innovative solutions like ultrasonic technology.

Ultrasonic Solution: Tone Locking and Encryption

LISNR’s Radius SDK employs ToneLock, a built-in security feature that can set a unique identifier for an outgoing tone transmission. It can only be demodulated by the recipient for which it is intended. This lock and key on the tone payload plus customer-provided encryption form a powerful combination to thwart interception attempts and facilitate secure data transmission. 

The specificity of receiver-targeted encryption adds a critical layer of security that minimizes the risk of broad-spectrum cyber threats. This targeted approach can also be used for personalization during transmission while adding an extra layer of protection.

Strategy #3: Verify Transaction Integrity

Verifying the integrity of each transaction is essential for digital wallet companies to ensure that every transaction executed is legitimate and consensual. This strategy aims to detect and prevent any tampering or fraudulent activity within transactions, safeguarding both the consumer’s financial assets and the platform’s reliability. 

By ensuring transaction integrity, digital wallet companies can offer a trustworthy service and minimize financial losses for the business and its customers due to fraud. Maintaining a secure, transparent transaction environment is critical in sustaining consumer trust and loyalty, which are indispensable for digital wallet services’ long-term success and growth.

Challenge: Determine Transaction Authenticity and Participant Identity

Fraudsters often attempt to impersonate legitimate parties or manipulate transaction details. The challenge lies in securely and reliably verifying the integrity of the transaction and the identities of all involved parties. 

The sophistication of such fraud attempts necessitates an equally sophisticated response. Effective countermeasures must, therefore, be dynamic and resilient, capable of adapting to the constantly evolving tactics of cybercriminals.

Ultrasonic Solution: Bi-Directional Transceivers

LISNR’s Radius SDK goes beyond unidirectional tones, offering bi-directional transceivers for two-way verification. This confirms the transaction’s authenticity and the sender’s and receiver’s identity, providing an additional layer of security. 

By verifying two-way communication is legitimate and secure, this technology effectively closes a common loophole exploited in digital fraud. Additionally, this bi-directional capability facilitates a richer, more interactive transaction experience, enabling services and features that rely on secure, two-way data exchange.

Getting Started: Implement Ultrasonic Fraud Prevention Strategies

The integration of ultrasonic technology into digital transaction processes requires a thoughtful approach to overcome potential operational challenges. These include updating existing systems, training staff, and improving user adoption. 

Key considerations include technical implementation, user education, and privacy compliance. By addressing these areas, businesses can smooth the transition to ultrasonic fraud prevention strategies, enhancing security without sacrificing user experience.

Technical Implementation

Start with a pilot program to assess existing infrastructure compatibility and identify any necessary technical adjustments. 

This step is crucial for smoothing the transition. It allows fine-tuning the technology in a controlled environment before a full-scale rollout. It also helps benchmark the performance improvements and security enhancements brought about by ultrasonic solutions.

User Education

Educate both employees and customers on how ultrasonic technology works and its benefits to foster acceptance and trust. 

For employees, detailed training sessions can demystify the technology and give them the confidence and skills they need to assist customers effectively. For customers, clear, accessible information and demonstrations can alleviate concerns and highlight the technology’s value in enhancing transaction security.

Privacy Compliance

Ensure that the use of ultrasonic technology complies with data protection regulations, reinforcing your commitment to user privacy. This involves technical measures to secure data and transparent communication with users about how their information is used and protected. 

Adherence to privacy standards is a critical factor in maintaining legal compliance and user trust and confidence in the security of their transactions.

Future-Proof Digital Transactions Against Fraud

The battle against digital transaction fraud is ongoing, with fraudsters continually adapting their tactics. Ultrasonic proximity technology, particularly solutions developed by LISNR, offers a dynamic and secure method for keeping ahead of threats. Its ability to provide safe, contactless authentication and data transmission positions it as a critical component of future digital security frameworks.

The Role of Ultrasonic Technology in Evolving Digital Security

Ultrasonic proximity verification utilizes the untapped potential of sound waves to secure contactless transactions. By circumventing the historical limitations that have bound security measures to the vulnerabilities of the digital realm, ultrasonic technology provides a versatile, forward-thinking solution against the constantly evolving tactics of modern cybercriminals. 

For example:

  • The augmentation of existing proximity tokens for two-factor authentication (2FA) emerges as a promising frontier in the battle against cybercrime. 
  • Advanced proximity solutions that use ultrasonic technology can provide a robust defense against retokenization schemes, a prevalent tactic among fraudsters seeking to bypass traditional security measures. 

By utilizing ultrasonic for proximity tokens, digital wallet providers can ensure that the additional layer of authentication is physically close to the transaction point and dynamically linked to the transaction context, making unauthorized access exponentially more difficult for attackers.

Anticipating the Next Wave of Cybersecurity Innovations

Digital transactions usage will continue to evolve and grow, as will the technologies designed to secure them. In the future, ultrasonic technology will likely be integrated with other cutting-edge solutions, such as blockchain for transparency and AI for real-time threat detection. 

For instance:

  • Consider a scenario where ultrasonic technology is employed within a blockchain-enabled digital wallet platform. 
  • This integration could establish a highly secure and transparent transaction environment, where ultrasonic signals authenticate the transaction, and the blockchain ledger records it, ensuring immutability and traceability. 

Additionally, integrating AI with ultrasonic proximity detection could enable the system to analyze transaction patterns in real time, identifying and mitigating potential threats before they manifest. Such a holistic approach enhances the security of digital transactions while significantly improving user trust and confidence in digital payment systems.

As businesses look to future-proof their operations against cyber threats, adopting more advanced prevention and detection strategies will be critical to reinforce consumer confidence while providing a platform for more secure, seamless digital transactions.

LISNR’s ultrasonic solutions exemplify the kind of innovative technology that can redefine digital wallet security and risk mitigation for fraud prevention and detection strategies. As we move towards a future where digital transactions are ubiquitous, investing in ultrasonic fraud prevention strategies will be crucial for staying one step ahead in the cybersecurity game.

The Future of QSR Loyalty Marketing

Conquer QSR Loyalty Marketing Through Personalized Guest Experiences

Conquer QSR Loyalty Marketing Through Personalized Guest Experiences

As evolving customer expectations push the boundaries of traditional dining experiences, the quick service restaurant industry stands at a crucial juncture regarding how to deliver and excel in QSR loyalty marketing. Today’s consumers demand convenience, speed, and a personalized touch that resonates with their individual preferences, but how does that align with the push for rapid digitalization? 

It’s clear that the transformative potential of disruptive tech, from generative AI to ultrasonic technology, has the potential to redefine loyalty marketing and enhance guest experiences on-prem and online, but at what cost? Let’s take a closer look at a few ways the QSR industry can keep up with the speed of innovation and guest expectations.

TLDR; Key Takeaways

  • Personalized guest experiences drive loyalty and engagement in the QSR industry.
  • Predictive AI and data analytics are essential for creating tailored offers and understanding customer preferences.
  • Leveraging on-premise data collected on entry through ultrasonic technology can aid in delivering personalized and seamless guest experiences.
  • More secure technology is needed to thwart connectivity issues and fraud issues.

Introduction to Evolving QSR Customer Expectations

The post-COVID-19 demand for personalization in QSRs clearly reflects a broader shift in consumer behavior. 

Digital disruption has become the norm in the sector; embracing technologies that keep up with the pace of evolving quick-serve customer experiences is crucial for staying competitive and is the cornerstone of corporate innovation teams like Taco Bell and restaurant marketing teams like Burger King.

Today’s loyal customers expect the brands they’re loyal to recognize their preferences and history. A recent study by PayiQ found that 91% of customers value personalized experiences, and the push for loyalty programs that offer more than generic discounts has become paramount. In a sector where digital disruption has become the norm, especially post-COVID-19, embracing technologies that facilitate these personalized experiences is crucial for staying competitive

While quick serves are rapidly pacing towards total digitalization, most aren’t prepared to deliver the level of personalization that restaurant patrons expect. 52% of QSRs report dissatisfaction with their digital offerings, indicating a significant gap between current capabilities and consumer expectations 

The Role of Technology in Personalizing the QSR Experience

Innovation in on-premise technology is shaping the future of dining. As QSRs pivot towards more digital and contactless interactions, the exploration of alternatives to conventional methods like NFC for tap-to-pay becomes essential.

On-Premise Proximity Innovations

The advent of ultrasonic technology offers a groundbreaking solution for proximity verification and transactions without NFC. LISNR’s Radius SDK leverages ultrasonic sound waves to transmit data securely, ensuring a seamless and efficient customer experience even when traditional connectivity options falter. This technology facilitates contactless payments and paves the way for many on-prem personalized customer interactions.


Predictive AI is another pillar in the quest for hyper-personalization. By analyzing the behavioral data of loyalty program members, restaurants can predict preferences and tailor offers in real-time, significantly enhancing the customer experience. This integration of predictive AI with ultrasonic solutions represents a leap forward in crafting deeply personalized and engaging customer journeys.

Enhance Customer Recognition On-Premise

The core of creating a personalized QSR experience lies in recognizing the customers upon entry into the restaurant. Here, ultrasonic technology shines by enabling accurate on-premise entry verification. By determining the proximity and identity of customers through unique, secure ultrasonic signals, restaurants can unlock personalized greetings, offers, and services, making every visit memorable.

Utilizing data for a tailored customer journey involves collecting and analyzing on-premise interactions, orders, and preferences. This information, processed in real-time, allows for the delivery of personalized menu recommendations, dynamic pricing, and loyalty rewards, fostering a sense of recognition and appreciation among customers.

From Transactional to Relational: Building Deeper QSR Guest Connections

The transformation from transactional interactions to relational engagements represents a new frontier in the QSR industry. This shift underscores the importance of leveraging cutting-edge technology to understand and predict customer preferences, fostering deeper connections.

The Power of Predictive AI in Understanding Customer Preferences

Predictive AI can sift through vast amounts of data to discern patterns and preferences among QSR guests. This technology enables restaurants to anticipate customer needs and tailor their offerings accordingly. 

By integrating predictive AI, QSRs can offer menu recommendations based on previous orders, weather conditions, or even current events, ensuring each customer feels uniquely valued.

The Evolution of Loyalty Offers: Beyond Discounts

The era of offering mere discounts is giving way to a more sophisticated approach to loyalty programs. Personalized rewards programs now seek to understand what motivates and excites each customer. 

From offering exclusive access to new menu items to personalized meal recommendations, the goal is to make loyalty programs an integral part of the customer experience, increasing retention and satisfaction.

Leverage Data for Competitive Advantage in QSR Loyalty Marketing

Data is the currency of competitive advantage. The transition from purely transactional interactions to leveraging data to create meaningful, relational customer experiences is key to building lasting loyalty in the QSR industry.

For QSRs, the ability to collect, analyze, and act in real-time, on-prem loyalty customer data can be the difference between a generic experience and one with unprecedented levels of personalization.

Collecting and Analyzing On-Premise Customer Data

The ethical collection and analysis of customer data are foundational to creating personalized experiences. Ultrasonic technology, with its secure data transmission capabilities, offers a way to gather on-premise data without infringing on customer privacy. When used responsibly, this data can unlock insights into customer behaviors and preferences, informing everything from menu design to service improvements.

Predictive Models for Anticipating Customer Needs

Developing predictive models enables QSRs to not just react to customer preferences but to anticipate them. These models can forecast future buying behaviors based on historical data, allowing for real-time personalization of the customer experience. Whether suggesting a warm beverage on a cold day or offering a light salad to a health-conscious customer, predictive models can significantly enhance the customer’s dining experience.

Future Trends and Innovations in QSR Customer Personalization

Personalized menus… Interactive Employee Training… the possibilities are more wide-reaching than one can imagine. The landscape of quick service restaurants is on the brink of a major transformation, powered by the fusion of more accessible modalities like ultrasonic technology with groundbreaking innovations like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of Things (IoT). 

These advancements are not just reshaping how we think and respond to demands for customer personalization; they’re setting the stage for a future where every fast casual dining experience is tailored, secure, and seamlessly integrated. From contactless transactions that bypass traditional payment methods to loyalty programs that adapt in real-time to customer behavior, emerging technologies are paving the way for the next evolution in QSR customer engagement.

Trend #1. The Next Frontier: Ultrasonic Contactless Solutions

Ultrasonic technology continues to evolve, offering new ways to enhance the guest experience and operational efficiency. Imagine a world where customers can seamlessly order, pay, and pick up their meals without a wallet or NFC. This level of convenience and security is a vision for the future and is rapidly approaching reality with ultrasonic solutions.

Trend #2. The Role of Blockchain and IoT in Loyalty Programs

Blockchain and the Internet of Things (IoT) are set to play pivotal roles in the next generation of loyalty programs. By securely and transparently tracking customer interactions, these technologies can help create more personalized and engaging loyalty programs. Blockchain, for instance, can ensure that loyalty points are easily, securely managed, and redeemed, while IoT devices can provide real-time insights into customer preferences and behaviors.

Trend #3. Harnessing AI for Enhanced Personalization and Efficiency

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is reshaping the landscape of quick service restaurants, moving from mere data collection to actionable data intelligence. AI’s role in QSRs now extends to predictive analytics for inventory management, personalized customer engagement, and optimized staffing. This transition signifies a significant leap from gathering customer data to using AI-driven insights to inform strategic decisions and tailor experiences. The promise of AI to transform inventory management and customer interaction heralds a new era in operational efficiency and personalized service, making it a key trend to watch.

Trend #4. Geofencing: A New Era of Customer Engagement

Geofencing technology is a game-changer in the QSR industry, offering innovative ways to enhance customer engagement and operational efficiency. By setting up virtual boundaries, QSRs like McDonald’s and Chick-fil-A are pioneering geofencing to significantly reduce wait times. McDonald’s aims to cut wait times by 60 seconds in top markets by 2025 through its Ready on Arrival pickup technology. Alongside streamlining operations, this technology opens up new avenues for personalized marketing and service delivery, making it an essential tool for any forward-thinking QSR.

Embracing the New Era of QSR Personalization

As we stand on the brink of a new era in QSR guest personalization, the message is clear: embracing capabilities such as mobile ordering, curbside pickup, and ultrasonic contactless payments is imperative for those looking to lead in the industry. The future of dining is here, and it is deeply personal, highly efficient, and securely digital.

QSR executives who excel in this ultrasonic proximity transformation have the opportunity to redefine the essence of quick service restaurant guest experiences. This era demands a shift towards creating unforgettable, frictionless dining experiences that resonate personally with each customer. Loyalty rules!

Read more:

>Discover how LISNR’s ultrasonic technology can revolutionize your QSR experience

>Learn more about the applications of LISNR’s Radius SDK in creating personalized customer experiences

Is Sound the QR Code Alternative?

The QR code was designed in 1994 to allow for fast decoding speeds, hence the name Quick Response code. Rising in popularity over the years, demand for barcodes that could store more information, allowed for more variation, and would take up a smaller printing area increased. Today, QR codes are commonly seen on everything from restaurant menus to airline tickets.

Technology is constantly evolving. And it’s up to us to evolve with it.

It’s nothing to transfer data from one device to another through the cloud, Bluetooth, NFC or QR codes but are these the most secure methods? How can you guarantee the data being transferred to your wireless device or smartphone is safe? On a grand scale, how are business executives and IT leaders able to guarantee the security of their devices, employees and customers when data is being transferred?

Benefits of Sound Technology on a Global Scale

Ultrasonic data-over-sound technology offers a vast range of benefits, including offline data transmission, and serves as an alternative to other methods on a global scale. For example, consider an area where the transmission of radio waves is prohibited for security reasons like UK based power plant, EDF Energy. Sound waves are used as an alternative for data transmission and EDF energy uses this technology to communicate with mobile workers in their nuclear power stations and also to connect monitoring sensors in the plant.

Another, more relatable example is the Covid-19 pandemic. The need for contactless transactions and authentication methods arose practically overnight. Many companies turned to QR codes, relying on the ability to allow customers to scan their phones to pay or verify information. But what if there were a simpler or more secure method to collect payment information?

QR codes may be a widely available technology, but many business leaders are realizing that just because something is available for use, doesn’t mean it should be. Risk and usability factors make data-over-sound the better alternative when it comes to security and total cost of ownership.

Why Are More Businesses Turning to Sound?

Perhaps the biggest and most popular reason businesses are turning to sound technology over QR codes is because of the security it provides. Most eCommerce merchants accept payments via digital wallets, direct debit, payment cards and mCommerce mobile payments. 9 out of 10 companies encourage customers to pay via preferred methods like QR codes, to minimize risk of payment fraud. But what if you could reduce risk even further?

Let’s take a look at 2 primary reasons businesses are turning to sound technology:


Over the past few years, scanning a quick response code (QR code) has become a popular way to access paperless menus, carry out contactless transactions and more. Since early 2022, the FBI has warned that fake QR code scams are on the rise. These scams hijack normally safe QR codes and send you to phishing websites that steal your financial information (or worse). 

To avoid scams and fraudulent attacks, many are looking toward the safety and security of transmitting data over sound. For example, in retail, transit and event spaces, smartphone payments and ticketing applications use sound to convert standard speakers and microphones into high-quality receivers and transmitters for secure data transmission. Only necessary data is transmitted to complete on premise transactions, provide identity verification for entry and trigger location-specific marketing to deliver a huge advantage over other existing technologies.

Watch this short Youtube video to learn more about the security advantages of ultrasonic sound technology: https://youtu.be/QfqpAqcmh_0

Total Cost of Ownership

Smartphone NFC and Bluetooth (BLE) transactions require a huge upfront investment, which is why many choose the affordability of QR codes. But QR codes lack safety and security. So what is the alternative?

With sound technology, you can improve payment efficiency by 67 percent over QR codes and eliminate the large per unit investment of $500 to $1,000 to upgrade to NFC readers. 

At LISNR we aim to help buyers and owners determine the  direct and indirect costs of our ultrasonic data-over-sound technology in the retail, transit and event space. We take pride in the ongoing lifecycle of our product by helping merchants, financial service providers and mobility companies improve equipment costs by 33 percent over QR code scanners. Contact us to learn more about how sound can help you improve costs and increase efficiency and security.

Experience LISNR Now

See how LISNR is used for different day to day experiences in payments, retail and mobility or choose to download a FREE trial of the LISNR SDK to implement in your own mobile application.

AutoConnect: The Offline Payment Feature Created by LISNR

Everyday customers are losing patience due to long lines at checkout. Most often these delays are caused by slow moving payment processes. While the shift of cash currency to direct payment from mobile wallets has helped to improve efficiency, the use of unidirectional QR codes to associate the customer’s digital wallet to the merchant POS has created huge lags in processing transactions.

Insert LISNR AutoConnect. Built on LISNR Radius 2.0, AutoConnect is designed to deliver ultra-simple mobile device bi-directional scanning for high efficiency touchless payments, entry authorization and proof-present verification. With features such as Instantaneous scanning from up to 1 meter away, bidirectional offline transmitting and receiving, and the ability to work on all smartphones, speaker-enabled Android tablets, iPads, and mPOS devices, the LISNR AutoConnect feature is a complimentary element to any wallet user interface. 

Implementation at the time of a typical QR code scan allows little to no change for the user process while forcing the minimal amount of screen design effort. Delivering this wallet enhancement ensures a much more efficient user experience without the need for additional training.

The global QR code payment market size was valued at $8.07 billion in 2020, and projected to reach $35.07 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 16.1%. Yet, as rising data breaches and security issues in QR codes payment market hamper the growth of the market, LISNR’s product adoption 40% in the past 12 months has set AutoConnect up for success.

In addition to payment use cases, LISNR Radius 2.0 can be leveraged in scenarios where internet connectivity is limited, as dense populations and rural areas present challenges. Radius 2.0 can address these concerns, often found in the mobility space where passenger onboarding in a timely manner can be disrupted by spotty connectivity. More so, in the event space where thousands of consumers are trying to enter by a specific deadline, LISNR Radius 2.0 can ensure a seamless, frictionless entry experience for consumers and employees alike.

LISNR’s Radius Software Development Kit (SDK) delivers a drop-in solution for simple integration into wallets, currently using QR code. The SDK comes with the LISNR receiver and/or transmitter and the necessary API such that the block can fit alongside of, or completely replace the QR code generator/decoder code. This wallet-ready design minimizes effort while shortening time to deployment to a matter of weeks

LISNR AutoConnect introduces greater range, efficiency and bi-directionality, without the need for a network connection. The net result is an expedited checkout process and greater customer satisfaction, with enhanced merchant loyalty and greater payment flexibility.


LISNR’s proximity solutions ensure secure, seamless and contactless data transfer. Powered by a ubiquitous device & OS platform, LISNR’s non-captive near-field association provides proof-present authentication enabled through proximity tokens. From entry validation to payments and fulfillment, LISNR empowers merchant micro-moments across the customer journey. Headquartered in Cincinnati, LISNR is currently deployed in 8 countries via multiple global partners. LISNR powers transactions and connects the online to offline customer journey globally with the most advanced near Ultrasonic Data Platform. Founded in 2012, LISNR’s major investors include Visa, Intel, Jump Capital, Mercury Fund, R/GA, and Synchrony Financial. To learn more about the LISNR technology visit: www.lisnr.com or email info@lisnr.com.

How is LISNR helping Merchants Attract More Customers with Improved Checkout Experience?

Digital and contactless payments can change the way we use our personal devices and allow consumers to complete transactions almost instantaneously. Consumers want to feel connected to the product they are buying, but also want to stay loyal to the brands they most closely associate with. Merchants are tasked with tackling a digitally transformative world, and LISNR is ready to connect them with their loyal customers. 

Where Current Modalities Fail

The global contactless payment market size was valued at $1.34 trillion in 2020 and is expected to expand at a CAGR of 20.3% from 2021 to 2028. When consumers think of contactless modalities, we often think of QR Code, BLE, or NFC. QR codes are often seen in mobile wallets and mobile applications, such as Venmo, PayPal, or Kroger. Similarly, NFC is dominated by ApplePay and GooglePay. Yet while convenience is often discussed when it comes to QR codes and NFC – user privacy, transactional costs, and imperfect customer expectations are associated with each transaction type.

Apple was recently sued over Apple Pay, in which it was accused of using its market power to fend off its competition of rival payment apps and charging card issuers fees. Apple owns the transaction and keeps the metadata for itself, disallowing its merchants to gain valuable insights on their consumers. 

Meanwhile, consumer-presented QR codes require the image to be perfectly oriented with no line of sight issues, are susceptible to contrast ratios by sunlight and in-store elements, and create an element of fraud. For merchants, the upfront cost required to install, implement and maintain its respective scanners impacts its bottom line and takes up prime real estate on their small countertops. QR codes fail to work in an offline environment, thus forcing longer wait times at payment, the inability to transact in low – to – no internet areas, and the unidirectional flow of QR codes. For consumers, screenshotting their mobile wallets’ QR code introduces an element of financial fraud that no merchant wants to take part of. 

How LISNR takes the Spotlight

It is core to LISNR’s business model that we do not change consumer behavior at time of checkout. LISNR delivers secure proximity solutions over an open counter platform, reducing the total cost of ownership while enabling more customer-driven payment solutions. LISNR’s proximity solutions ensure secure, frictionless and contactless data transfer leveraging non-captive near-field association to enable proof-present authentications through proximity tokens.

With more than 34 million merchants looking to accept contactless payments by 2027, LISNR only relies on the speaker/ microphone infrastructure of consumer devices to transact. While shoppers are looking at their digital wallets to reduce friction, by providing an offline, bi-directional product to merchants and ecosystem leaders, LISNR enables:

  • Increased usage of merchant apps and loyalty programs 
  • 9x reduction of merchants transaction time over QR code
  • Reduction of transaction cycles by 10.5%, minimizing network idle time
  • 28.6% improvement in payment terminal cost 
  • Decreased wait times at checkout which allow cart sizes to increase

As LISNR continues to launch with customers displacing QR codes, we’re simultaneously creating an ecosystem with direct access to nearly 2 million global merchants through our strategic partnerships. As a result of current deployments, we have processed nearly 20 million engagements and over 1 million transactions in the past 6 months. LISNR’s transactional growth is 2x that of the global contactless payment market. 

Merchants are innovative and consumer retention is directly correlated to a positive in-store experience. As the demand for omnichannel experiences increases, LISNR’s value added services enable payment organizations to provide a robust and unique solution for its merchants. For merchants themselves, LISNR enables you to create your own secure, contactless payment experience providing end consumers with more personalized payment options, an improved checkout experience, and significant cost savings to your bottom line. 

To learn more about how LISNR can enable you or your subset of merchants, click here

How to Increase Customer Satisfaction with an Efficient Contactless Checkout

Contactless Checkout

Retailers around the world, especially small-to-midsize ones, often struggle to match the efficiency of e-commerce. Grocers have felt this too, especially during the pandemic, as customers have seen how simple it can be to find the items they want online and checkout on their own schedules. Digital/mobile payment options make completing the purchases feel almost instantaneous.


With in-store retail, however, customers often have to deal with the hassle of checkout lines. In fact, over half of shoppers globally have left a store without buying anything due to lines being too long. In the U.S. alone, long lines cost retailers $100 billion a year, according to a 2021 survey commissioned by appointment booking software provider Qudini.


If and when customers eventually get to the cashier, the actual payment can be slow too, whether they’re counting cash, trying to figure out where on a payment terminal to insert their credit card, or using a QR code that seems to need the perfect conditions to scan properly. But it doesn’t have to be so inefficient.


If retailers want to close the convenience gap on e-commerce, they need to improve the checkout experience. Using more efficient payment methods, such as near field proximity technology enabled through mobile device audio components, can speed up the checkout process. That means a better experience for customers and lines that move faster.


Why Current Checkout Methods Fall Short

When a customer goes to pay at a physical retail or grocery store, most of the options tend to be slow. They’re also often clunky or not very accessible. These include:


  • Cash: Physical cash tends to be the slowest payment method. From the customer counting their money, to the clerk then checking that amount, to putting it in the register, providing change, and generating a receipt, the whole process takes between 15-20 seconds, as a LISNR field study finds. That adds up when you’re dealing with a steady stream of customers day in and day out.


  • Credit cards: While LISNR’s study does show that using credit cards can improve checkout speeds, this payment option is still struggling to provide the contactless user experience that customers want.  Additionally, consumers are more driven to pay through their mobile phones, where they can experience the convenience of an electronic wallet tracking their payments.


Perhaps a greater barrier is that in many countries, not all retailers can afford credit card processing infrastructure. Even if a store can invest in this technology, many customers in these markets do not have credit cards anyway.


  • Mobile payments via QR codes: Direct payment wallets on smartphones provide an intriguing option to improve checkout efficiency, as many markets without credit card infrastructure do have mobile payment access. However, these mobile wallets tend to rely on QR codes that get scanned at checkout. The problem is that this process tends to still take a while, as consumers struggle to get their phones to scan correctly.


QR codes typically need to be scanned within four inches and aligned properly with the scanner. While falling short in meeting the accessibility needs of people with disabilities, issues with lighting and vibration can also prevent successful scans. The clerk might then have to physically take the customer’s phone to scan it for them, which isn’t always a great experience for either party, as it’s no longer contactless.


The Better Way Forward

While the use of direct payment wallets is on the right track, the application so far with QR codes has been missing the mark. Instead, digital wallets that use smartphone audio components for near field proximity scanning, such as that provided by LISNR AutoConnect, can vastly improve the checkout experience.


LISNR Autoconnect uses technology that is already available on most mobile point of sale (mPOS) devices and smartphones to complete payments. The ultrasonic scanning can occur from up to a ½ meter away and happens within a couple of seconds. That means this mobile pay checkout process can also be contactless, rather than having customers touch payment terminals or hand a phone to a cashier.


Altogether, this technology can improve payment efficiency by up to 67%, finds a LISNR field study. Add it all up and a single checkout lane can increase shopper capacity by 10%, based on an average of two minutes per checkout transaction (including ringing up items) for 10 hours per day.


This improvement in payment speed means retailers can reduce the risk of customers walking out of the store due to long lines. And by creating a better experience in this aspect, that helps close the efficiency gap that might otherwise draw customers to online retail.


Want to learn more about how you can increase checkout efficiency with data-over-sound contactless payments? Get in touch with LISNR today.

Why Replace QR Codes With Data Over Sound?

Replace QR code with Data Over Sound

QR Codes’ High-Risk Shortcomings Open the Door to Alternatives

The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated the shift to contactless transactions and authentication. Doing so not only applies to health concerns but also ease of use. With QR codes, for example, customers can simply scan their phones to pay or verify information, rather than fishing in their wallets for credit cards and deciphering chip readers.

But while many companies are moving to mobile ticketing and payments systems that use QR codes, this method may not be the most secure or efficient. Other options, such as data-over-sound from LISNR, can offer a simpler and more secure transaction than how QR codes are being used today.

In this article, we’ll explore the following:

  •   How are QR Codes being used?
  •   Why do QR codes pose security risks?
  •   What are the usability issues with QR codes
  •   Why use data over sound over QR codes?


How are QR Codes being used?

Following their release to the public in 1994, QR codes have been adopted into such uses as launching applications and web pages on mobile devices as well as mobile boarding passes for airlines.

More recently QR codes have made their way into the area of mobile payments. In China, WeChat Pay and Alipay have launched and are expanding QR code-based payments, wherein 2020 85% of payments were made by scanning a QR code . In India Unified Payments Interface (UPI) payments using QR codes generate over 250 million transactions per month.

There has also been an expanded usage into local transit. One example is the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation QR code ticketing that launched in 2018. Riders can buy tickets on their phones and then scan a QR code instead of a physical transit card or inserting a token to enter the gates to ride.

The adoption of QR codes in these markets seemingly has taken off, but companies utilizing this technology are now looking for alternatives due to risk and usability factors. They are finding that the cost of overcoming these issues outweighs the savings of using a widely available technology.


Why do QR Codes pose security risks?

While QR codes have their place serving several applications, their adoption into payments and mobile transit ticketing is proving to be a big security risk. These risks are based on the general simplicity and availability of the technology. More specifically QR codes can be created and read by anyone, and duplication is as simple as taking a picture. That simplicity in technology has contributed to $18.5 million in stolen funds from QR code scams internationally in 2020. 

 One of the top QR code scams involves phishing. With phishing, cyber-criminals will present a QR code in a way that makes consumers think that they are scanning a legit code. In actuality, the hacker’s QR code is a sort of “trojan horse” that drives a link to malware through websites or downloads. This type of scam was captured in a recent 2021 article by McAfee.

 As McAfee notes, restaurant owners, for example, might download an app that pretends to generate QR codes but instead steals that owner’s data. “Once a hacker gains access to the restaurant’s customer database, they can use this information to launch phishing scams under the guise of our favorite local eateries,” the article states.

 These QR code scams are on the rise worldwide. In the eastern states of India there were 200,000 QR code fraud cases in 2020. This escalation is driving many companies in the region to seek alternatives to QR code, such as data over sound.


What are the usability issues with QR Codes?

In addition to the security risks that QR codes can pose, they also aren’t as easy to use as you might think. In theory, they speed up transactions, but that’s not always the case.

Some of the usability issues with QR codes include:

  •     QR codes currently require close proximity: While QR codes may be contactless, they still require the scanner and the code to be close together. That means social distancing may not be possible when a customer shows their QR code on their phone to check out at a store, for instance. Even when social distancing measures end, it may not always be practical or efficient to require this close distance.
  •     QR codes can be sensitive to light: Factors such as light can make it difficult to read QR codes. That’s why cashiers and ticket agents often have to ask customers to turn up the brightness on their screens to use QR codes.
  •     QR codes can be sensitive to motion: QR codes can also be sensitive to motion, so consumers may struggle to hold their devices still enough for the scanner to read the code right away. Or, the scan might not work on the first try because the mobile device is held at an angle, so it flips the orientation of the QR code right when a scan is about to occur.


As a result, QR codes can cause problems such as slow boarding processes and congested lines when used for ticketing. Plus, some transportation agents physically take a consumer’s phone in order to scan the ticket properly, which some passengers are uncomfortable with. These types of issues have prompted some shuttle and bus companies in India and other parts of Asia to turn to other means of ticket collection.

Meanwhile, merchants also run into issues, such as long lines due to slow payment processing. To try to remedy this, some merchants turn to more expensive technology, such as advanced QR scanners. These may work better but offer little differential value toward the overall fintech solution. Plus, expensive QR code scanners can be relatively large and reduce a retailer’s counter space, thereby decreasing their opportunity to place high-value items near the register.


Data over sound answers the calling for a more secure, easy-to-use transaction technology

As the name implies, data-over-sound technology works by transmitting sound between devices, which can be either audible or inaudible depending on how it’s used. Data over sound offers several advantages over QR codes, such as:

  •   Greater security: The data sent between devices for data-over-sound transactions can be encrypted and can use proprietary signaling to reduce the risk of duplication. Companies also do not face the same phishing threats, though it’s important to still only work with reputable data-over-sound software companies.
  •   Longer ranges: Depending on the use case, data over sound can work at much greater ranges than QR codes. Some types of data-over-sound technology can be used up to a distance of one foot between devices, while others can be used up to 10 feet and even beyond. That can allow for social distancing while also improving customer experience in non-pandemic times by reducing uncomfortable crowding.
  •   More efficiency: In addition to working at longer ranges than QR codes, data over sound provides more efficiency by being able to handle multiple transactions at once. For example, data over sound could be used to verify the tickets for multiple bus riders at once, thereby speeding up boarding times.
  •   Software-based: Data-over-sound recognition can be added through software and then embedded into mobile apps, websites or other systems. That provides benefits such as how merchants don’t have to give up so much valuable counter space for a physical scanner.


Start Leveraging Data-Over-Sound Technology with LISNR

LISNR’s data-over-sound technology helps retail, mobility, and many other types of companies facilitate fast, secure, contactless transactions.

LISNR works with companies like Shuttl, India’s premier office shuttle service, to help keep drivers and riders safe while delivering a fast, reliable boarding process. Testing shows that using LISNR’s data-over-sound technology can reduce boarding times by as much as two seconds per person, which can add up fast.

Retailers also benefit from using LISNR to support contactless payments. In many cases, payment terminal hardware already can support data-over-sound software, making implementation easy and cost-effective.

To see how your company can benefit by switching from QR codes to data over sound, get in touch with our team.

Mobile Boarding & Beyond: What Bus Companies Need to Focus on in 2021

Continued reopenings and successful vaccination campaigns will almost certainly lead to an increase in travel. While it may take some time to fully get back to pre-pandemic levels, bus companies can benefit from this travel demand and bounce back from a very difficult year.

From individuals taking short regional trips to visit family members they haven’t seen in a while, to tourists enjoying weekend trips, to college students heading home for a (hopefully) more normal holiday season later this year, there’s a lot of potential for bus companies to find customers in the coming months. And because the economy may take some time to recover, more cost-conscious consumers may prefer to take buses rather than more expensive options such as trains or planes. Still, bus companies need to provide a safe, pleasant experience for passengers in order to entice them back. 

What Bus Companies Must Focus on in 2021

Safely Increasing Capacity

As travel restrictions ease and customers become more comfortable being around other passengers, bus companies can start to increase the number of riders per trip. Still, safety measures like using masks and implementing enhanced cleaning practices will likely continue to be necessary for a while.

Bus companies should clearly state their health and safety practices so that customers can determine whether they’re comfortable getting on board. It would be a shame to lose customers who, for example, would take the bus if they knew there would be temperature checks and that they could open windows, but because that information isn’t publicized in advance, they choose to drive instead.

Increasing Payment & Boarding Efficiency 

That starts with reducing the need to line up at bus stations to purchase tickets. Many bus companies have already rolled out easy-to-use online payment systems, but if you haven’t yet, now could be a good time to do so. From there, passengers should easily be able to receive an e-ticket or some type of confirmation that can allow for fast boarding.

The less bus companies have to review paper tickets, the faster they can typically board the bus and avoid frustrating queues; when that happens in a location with multiple buses, sometimes customers don’t even know which line to get in.

Ideally, bus companies can even go beyond scanning e-tickets, which can still create logjams and require employees to physically get close to customers at a time that many still want to maintain social distance. Verification technologies like data-over-sound can allow for faster confirmations at a greater distance than when using QR codes providing the customer with an efficient & seamless mobile boarding solution. 

Improving Customer Experience 

In addition to providing a better experience regarding areas like cleanliness and boarding procedures, bus companies should also think about how they can elevate customer experience to win back those who might be considering other modes of transportation.

For example, providing more in-ride media options to compete with airplanes could be a benefit customers appreciate. Some bus companies also try to appeal to more of a luxury, business-class market, such as by offering more legroom than airplanes and food/beverages (which could be more practical post-pandemic).

Another approach to elevating customer experience and appeal to new customer segments could be to implement more sustainable practices. Some municipal bus operators use alternative clean energy sources, and commercial bus companies may increasingly have opportunities to upgrade to more environmentally friendly fleets in the coming years. Meanwhile, even small measures, like highlighting the environmental impact of using paperless tickets, could help provide a strong experience for customers.

What This Means for Your Mobility Company 

Implementing these types of measures can go a long way toward helping bus companies make up for the ridership drops experienced during the pandemic. Travel will likely see a strong surge, but to keep ridership up in the years to come, bus companies also need to think about how they can create these types of safe, sustainable, efficient experiences.

LISNR®: The Most Advanced Ultrasonic Platform

In this new normal for mobility, contactless methods must operate at distances greater than what NFC or QR codes can provide. LISNR®, the most advanced ultrasonic platform, enables authentication across distances of centimeters to many meters. Plus, it’s secure, fast and easy-to-use for passengers.

Recently, BusUp, the #1 corporate bus commuter management platform in the E.U., integrated LISNR® to enable contactless mobile boarding pass authentication. As a result, the company aims to increase safety, efficiency and speed for its passengers through contactless ultrasonic technology. 

Learn More About Ultrasonic Technology by Calling LISNR® 

Want to see how your business can leverage data-over-sound technology to better serve customers in 2021? Get in touch with our team today. To learn more, give LISNR a call at 513-322-8400 or send us a message.

Why Ultrasonic Is Emerging As The Go-To Solution For Mobility 

Why Ultrasonic Is Emerging As The Go-To Solution For Mobility 

Many transportation and bus companies have resumed services after shutting down to help stop the spread of COVID-19. To reopen, these mobility companies have had to put many safety measures in place to continue to stop the spread. Such efforts are not without their difficulties.

COVID-19 And Its Effect On Mobility & Transportation

If you’ve traveled at all in the past few months, you’ve probably spotted signs or heard requests like these: 

“Please keep a six-foot distance between you and others.” 

“Mask required.” 

“Please stay home if you feel ill or have any symptoms of COVID-19.”

Some transportation companies are taking even more precautions beyond these safety measures. For example, some bus companies are operating under reduced schedules and taking temperatures of all passengers before they board.

While these measures protect passengers as they’re traveling, they don’t cut payment and ticketing concerns. Long lines at ticket counters, congested waiting areas, and the exchange of credit/debit cards and cash for payment all increase the risk of spreading the disease.

Passengers understand these risks. Since the onset of the pandemic, ridership has decreased dramatically. In July of 2020, there was a 58% national reduction in travelers when compared to numbers from 2019. 

Ultrasonic Technology Is the Solution

How can transportation companies stay profitable while still prioritizing the safety of their passengers? Ultrasonic technology, or data-over-sound, is emerging as the go-to mobility solution. Ultrasonic technology enables contactless proximity verification and authentication for mobility companies all while ensuring proper safety measures for both passengers and drivers. 

What This Means For Your Mobility Company 

Ultrasonic enables you to eliminate lines at the ticket counter by allowing passengers to pay for, receive and verify their boarding pass electronically. It eliminates the need for cumbersome QR code payment methods that aren’t touch-free. And it allows you to move passengers from one place to the next without contact.

LISNR®: The Most Advanced Ultrasonic Platform

In this new normal for mobility, contactless methods must operate at distances greater than what NFC or QR codes can provide. LISNR®, the most advanced ultrasonic platform, enables authentication across distances of centimeters to many meters. Plus, it’s secure, fast and easy-to-use for passengers.

Recently, BusUp, the #1 corporate bus commuter management platform in the E.U., integrated LISNR® to enable contactless mobile boarding pass authentication. As a result, the company aims to increase safety, efficiency and speed for its passengers through contactless ultrasonic technology. 

Learn More About Ultrasonic Technology By Calling LISNR® 

We believe the effects of COVID-19 on the mobility industry will be lasting. To ensure you’re providing safe transportation without sacrificing your bottom line, you must go ultrasonic. To learn more, give LISNR a call at 513-322-8400 or send us a message.

Exploring Contactless Technology: Mobile-to-Mobile

Contactless transactions are here to stay, as they’ve become ingrained in our daily lives. From picking up our groceries at the curb to sending some extra cash to a friend through an app, contactless mobile transactions are quickly becoming our norm.

We are accelerating to a cashless society in which mobile payments are becoming increasingly important. A recent study completed by McKinsey found that over three-quarters of US consumers made a mobile payment of some type in 2019—even before the COVID-19 pandemic. They also found that the most-often-used apps include digital wallets that enable in-store and P2P payments.

What Is Mobile to Mobile?
One of the most common types of contactless technologies is the mobile-to-mobile payment. An example of a widely-accepted use case of mobile-to-mobile is the peer-to-peer (P2P) payment. Using P2P, you can send money or payments to other users via apps like Venmo, PayPal or Cash App. Mobile-to-mobile is also enabled through the use of digital wallets like Apple Pay.

Mobile-to-mobile payments remove the need to carry cash or a wallet full of credit cards. They also “promise” speed and simplicity. Payments are sent using a linked bank account or credit card and then verified using a one-time-pin (OTP), QR code or another authentication tool.

LISNRⓇ: Enabling Seamless & Contactless Mobile-to-Mobile Transactions
We now live in a world where 82% of consumers expect a fast, contactless and seamless checkout experience, no matter where they are. And, unfortunately, solutions like the QR code are oversaturated, cumbersome and not entirely contactless or seamless. They just can’t keep up.

LISNRⓇ enables truly contactless transactions between any two mobile devices anywhere. Our product, LISNRⓇ Point, enables short-range, reliable 1:1 ultrasonic data transfer and authentication (SDK) between devices within three feet and under.

How Does It Work?
The action begins on the customer’s mobile device, called the client device. They open the app and navigate to the LISNRⓇ listening screen. On the backend, the merchant device beacons a unique node ID that the client device receives. Once the payload is received, it’s sent automatically for verification. The entire process happens via ultrasonic technology or data-over-sound.

Point doesn’t require a network and works on all devices. The required micro-communications travel via sound between devices using standard speakers and microphones. The best part? No QR code is ever required.

Move Beyond the QR Code With LISNRⓇ
It’s time to move forward. Give your customers the truly contactless experience they want with LISNRⓇ. To learn more about incorporating mobile-to-mobile payments via our contactless technology, give us a call today at 513-322-8400 or send us a message.

Deliver a Seamless & Contactless Customer Experience With BOPIS

Where do we go from here? 

This is a question a lot of retailers spend their days (and probably their nights) thinking about. It’s no secret that contactless retail is here to stay. So is the need for seamless customer experience. 

How do we bridge the gap between hands-off and hands-on service? Enter order checkout and fulfillment methods such as BOPIS to the rescue.

What Is BOPIS?

BOPIS stands for “buy online, pick-up in store.” A typical BOPIS process begins when a customer makes a purchase from a website or app and then proceeds to the brick-and-mortar store to pick it up, typically on the same day.

According to recent data, nearly 70% of US shoppers have used BOPIS more than once. Furthermore, 50% of shoppers have chosen where to make a purchase based on whether they could pick their order up in-store.

Retailers Taking Advantage of BOPIS Capabilities

Some retailers have offered BOPIS options for a few years now. Others have jumped on the train recently and have become fast leaders in the space.


Target is hailed as an inspiration for many retailers looking to the future. The company currently allows customers to shop for many items online and to then pick them up in-store on the same day via Guest Services. 

As of June, Target added 750 new grocery items to its BOPIS service in 400 stores with plans to keep expanding the offerings to 1,500 stores by the end of the year.

At the end of last year, Target saw their digital sales surge 31%, with their same-day services accounting for 80% of the growth. These services include Drive Up, same-day delivery and BOPIS. Target’s CEO Brian Cornell has also said that the store’s cost of handling online orders dropped 90% using these methods.

Best Buy

Currently, Best Buy offers in-store pick-up and contactless curbside pick-up for any item in-store. Plus, the retailer promises BOPIS pick-up in one hour. As a result of this speed, the retailer continues to see sales growth related to BOPIS offerings.


Nordstrom currently offers curbside pick-up, as well as in-store pick-up in select stores. This is paying off for the retailer. At the end of last year, half of Nordstrom’s digital sales growth came from order pick-up.

BOPIS Is a Critical Part of Any Omnichannel CX Strategy

Not only does BOPIS offer contactless capabilities, but it also helps deliver the seamless omnichannel experience your customers want. A pandemic doesn’t change our need for convenience and a good experience. In fact, it increases it.

BOPIS has the potential to be a double-edged sword, however. Customers want to shop how they want to shop and when, and they want the same seamless experience regardless of the method they choose. If they need it, they want it and there’s no room for friction.

Is Contactless Checkout an Option With BOPIS?

Let’s address the elephant in the room. In today’s retail environment, “in store” doesn’t necessarily work. Many customers wish to do what it takes to receive their goods without stepping foot into a store. By combining BOPIS capabilities with curbside checkout, it has the potential to be truly contactless—no brick-and-mortar required.

How LISNRⓇ Can Help

To make seamless pick-up and check-out happen in-store or out, you need a frictionless method of customer authentication and payment. Unfortunately, traditional BOPIS processes involve subpar forms of order authentication such as QR codes a customer must scan when they reach a pick-up station.

Not only is this method not hands-free, but it’s chock-full of friction that can ruin the experience. 

LISNRⓇ offers a solution via an ultrasonic (data-over-sound) platform. Using speakers and devices retailers already have, LISNRⓇ enables automatic proximity authentication.

As soon as a customer reaches your pick-up area, authentication occurs automatically. The resulting experience is seamless and completely touch-free.

Take Advantage of Seamless & Contactless BOPIS Capabilities With LISNRⓇ

BOPIS isn’t going away. You can take advantage of seamless BOPIS capabilities with LISNRⓇ. To learn more about BOPIS or LISNR’s person-present solution, send us a message.

Kick In-Store Shopping to the Curb(side): Pickup Is Here to Stay

Millions of consumers are now taking advantage of curbside pickup service to protect themselves and others from COVID-19. It’s a common occurrence these days to open your favorite grocery store’s app and fill up your cart, only to realize the next available curbside pickup time is in two days. 

Curbside pickup involves placing an order, pulling up to a store or restaurant, and having your items loaded in your vehicle, hands-free. Not only is it a much safer alternative to in-store shopping, it’s also convenient, inspiring the service’s growth in popularity.

The Use of Curbside Pickup Is Growing Fast

A recent survey by Gallup found that more Americans have adopted new methods of ordering food and groceries since the pandemic began. Around 36% of consumers used curbside pickup from a store, up from 19% in March. This double-digit growth may come as no surprise. Yet, curbside pickup is only getting started.

How Major Retailers Use Curbside Pickup


Target is a major player in the curbside pickup space, often looked to for inspiration for many retailers taking the plunge. Target is currently on its way to meeting its goal of offering order pickup and drive-up at over 1,500 stores before the 2020 holiday season.

Using the Target app, customers can select “Drive Up” at checkout. The app will alert the customer when their order is ready. Once the customer arrives, they simply park in the designated area, alerting the app they’ve arrived. No signature is required, making this a more seamless experience. 


Walmart began its curbside venture grocery-only. Now, due to an increase in online shopping, the retailer allows customers to shop across all departments for curbside pickup. Similar to Target, Walmart customers place their orders by selecting available pickup times, arrive at the store, alert the app and receive their items.


The growth of curbside is also inspiring innovation. Starbucks is taking the idea of pickup to new levels amid the pandemic. While many customers can pick up their coffee via drive-thru and at the curb, the retailer plans to close around 400 sit-down cafes to build 300 pickup-only ones.

Consumers will place their order via mobile app and pick it up from a pickup-only location. The company’s first-ever pickup location in Manhattan also features a screen at the entrance that showcases each order’s status.

Curbside Pickup Isn’t Going Away

Why are retailers pushing to improve their curbside pickup service? For starters, no one knows just how long this pandemic will last. Additionally, consumers have fallen in love with the convenience curbside offers. It isn’t going away.

A recent study by CommerceHub found that 59% of consumers are more likely to use curbside pickup following the coronavirus outbreak. Plus, 75% of those who subscribed to delivery services such as Amazon Prime mentioned they were still likely to opt for curbside delivery once the pandemic subsides.

How LISNR® Can Help

The main point of curbside pickup is to eliminate touch. So how hands-free is your curbside pickup right now? Asking your customers to sign a mobile device or scan a QR code isn’t contactless. It’s also not an effective method of authentication and adds unnecessary friction to your customer’s experience.

LISNR® offers a solution via an ultrasonic (data-over-sound) platform. Using your existing speakers and devices, LISNR® enables proximity verification and contactless transactions.

Via data-over-sound, a customer can pull up to a curbside pickup location and receive immediate authentication. As a result, they encounter a seamless experience while reducing potentially crippling customer service costs due to lack of authentication.

Prepare for the Future of Curbside Pickup With LISNRⓇ

The future of retail is here. How will you adapt? LISNR® can help using our data-over-sound platform. To learn more about the future of curbside pickup or LISNR’s person-present solution, send us a message.

Contactless Checkout: Redefining the Customer Experience

At the beginning of the global pandemic, retailers were forced to source and implement contactless checkout and pick-up options to protect their employees and customers. To secure their bottom line, they moved fast, focusing on simply getting customers the products they needed—nothing more, nothing less.

We believe we’ll never return to what was once normal. This means retailers must continue to evolve to not only deliver the contactless system customers need but the experience they expect.

Will Customers Ever Return to Brick-and-Mortar Stores?

Whether a need to stay safe or a desire to hang on to newfound conveniences, customers are hesitating to return to brick-and-mortar stores. A recent survey by Epsilon found that one in seven consumers aren’t sure what will reassure them to return to retail storefronts.

According to Gallup, approximately 36% of US adults used curbside pick-up from a store, up from 19% in March. Another survey found that 59% of consumers believe they’ll likely use curbside pick-up following the outbreak.

The idea of shoppers visiting storefronts is irrelevant now. The pandemic has ushered in new shopping methods that consumers won’t soon forget. It’s time for retailers to focus on redefining the shopping experience in the new normal.

The Critical Elements of a Solid Contactless Customer Experience

To offer a seamless contactless customer experience, there are a few critical elements retailers must have in place.


  • Customer authentication: With customers opting for curbside pick-up, it’s up to retailers to get the right products to the right customer. The only way to make it happen is through contactless authentication. And that doesn’t mean QR codes or ID checks that often fall victim to human error and aren’t all that contactless anyway.
  • Contactless payment: Some retailers such as Sam’s Club have had great success with Scan-and-Go options, which allow customers to do their shopping, pay via mobile and leave the store. Retailers must now take it to the next level, delivering that same contactless payment system at curbside and pick-up.
  • Frictionless loyalty: Customers will expect retailers to deliver on their loyalty promises regardless of how they shop. Plus, without customers coming into the store, retailers must deliver brand interactions in new ways such as via mobile.


How LISNR® Can Help

It may seem impossible to do it all. Yet, LISNR® offers a solution via an ultrasonic (data-over-sound) platform. LISNR® enables proximity verification and contactless transactions using your existing speakers and devices.

How does it work? A customer can simply pull up to a curbside pick-up location and be authenticated immediately via sound. Once they receive their order, they simply pay via mobile and authentication occurs again at receipt. There’s zero contact from start to finish—no QR code or ID check required.

LISNR® also enables you to connect with your customers by delivering personalized offers and loyalty rewards directly to your customers’ mobile devices. While you keep your customers happy with a seamless experience, you’ll receive enhanced security and increased revenue in return.

Redefine Your Customer Experience With LISNR®

Smart retailers know that the future of retail is now; don’t get left behind. LISNR® can help. To learn more about the future of retail or LISNR’s person present solution, send us a message.

Contactless Retail Is No Longer Just An Option

Retail Will Never Be the Same

While many see the current contactless environment as something we’ll eventually come back from, it isn’t. The pandemic has taught the retail industry many things. The ability to offer the seamless retail experience consumers have been craving for years might be one of the most important. 

Take it from these retail giants that have taken the current climate in stride, using it to improve the retail experience they deliver to their customers.


Walmart announced in March its no-contact services for payment, pick-up, and delivery in an attempt to protect customers and employees. By scanning a QR code synched with the store’s app, in-store shoppers can make contactless purchases. Customers can also open their trunks and have an employee load their groceries without the need for a signature.

Sam’s Club

Sam’s Club currently uses contactless technology to allow customers to pay from their phones, skipping the checkout line completely. In fact, Scan & Go usage has increased for the company fourfold since the beginning of the pandemic.

These are only two examples of the hundreds of businesses rising to meet the needs of their customers in our new normal. According to a recent study by Mastercard, consumers are increasingly moving toward contactless card adoption. Around 79% of consumers around the globe are now using contactless payments.

Does the Store Even Matter Anymore?

Let us make another bold statement: The idea of shoppers being in the store is irrelevant. In this new phase of retail, companies like Target are converting lanes of parking lots to Order Ahead fulfillment stations. Large-format stores are averaging 30 cars simultaneously for pick-up. Companies such as Starbucks are creating “pick-up only” locations.

This is happening now, and it’s ushering in even more new methods of fulfillment. From groceries being dropped off in your trunk while you work to smart safes on the porch of our homes, we’re only seeing the beginning. It’s time for retail companies to act.

Current Authentication Methods Can’t Meet Contactless Requirements

A retailer’s sole responsibility is to get products into the hands of consumers. In today’s climate, there are many ways to make this happen, including Scan, Pay and Go, BOPIS, and self-check-out. Yet, with so many options available, how do we verify we’re getting the right products to the right customer?

QR code? ID check? Nothing? 

Inefficiencies in contactless food delivery, rideshare, and retail account for more than $10 billion in annual losses. Authentication is critical to avoid serious liabilities in safety and friendly fraud.

LISNR: Person Present. Proven.

Current methods such as QR codes can’t meet new requirements. They involve costly hardware upgrades and certain phones for compatibility. Plus, they leave much to be desired for security and reliability and can also fall victim to human error.

The answer is contactless authentication through near-ultrasonic data transmission. What does this mean? A customer can walk into your retail store and be identified automatically via sound. When they’re ready to leave, they pay via mobile and authentication happens at receipt—no contact required.

Or, a customer can pull up to your drive-thru after being identified via sound at the speaker. They pay, authentication occurs, and they receive their order. 

While your customers benefit from a seamless experience, you receive enhanced security, decreased chargebacks, and increased revenue.

The Future Is Now—Reach Out to LISNR® Today

LISNR® is an advanced, near-ultrasonic, ultra-low power data transmission technology that enables fast, reliable, and secure communication between devices via a speaker and/or microphone. To learn more about the future of retail or LISNR’s person present solution, send us a message.

COVID-19 & The New Normal: Contactless Delivery and Payments

In the past few months, the world has changed dramatically due to the coronavirus, COVID-19. Many of us are now required to stay home, protecting ourselves and others from exposure. As a result, many of our daily tasks such as grocery shopping and ordering takeout must be done online to avoid person-to-person contact.

Contactless = The New Normal

Our new normal requires us to keep our distance. Touching germ-ridden keypads, mobile devices, and terminals must be avoided. Food delivery and payments will require contactless solutions.


Food delivery was already a rapidly growing industry before the pandemic. Yet, at the writing of this blog post, food delivery spending is 30% higher than normal. More consumers are opting for delivery due to the closure of many restaurants across the country and to protect themselves.

In terms of contactless solutions within delivery, many food delivery companies allow payment inside their apps before the delivery takes place. Consumers are also selecting “contactless delivery” options within delivery applications that instruct couriers to place deliveries on their doorsteps as a makeshift contactless delivery method.

Delivery isn’t just for food either. Uber recently launched a new service, Uber Connect, allowing consumers to send no-contact packages to loved ones across various cities. Uber Direct works in the same way, allowing consumers to receive orders from retailers for groceries, household items, and more.


Many consumers now see contactless mobile payments as the normal and safe way to pay. They’re using their mobile device to pay for pick-up and delivery orders. Those that must venture in-store are taking advantage of proximity payment solutions to avoid paying with cash or card.

To keep up with consumers’ demands for safe payment solutions, many companies are changing the way they accept payment. Fast food companies such as Burger King are advertising contactless drive-thru services. And grocery chains like Publix are quickly implementing tap-to-pay systems in-store.

Around 27% of small businesses have seen an increase in the use of services like Apple Pay since the onset of COVID-19. Richard Crone, CEO of Crone Consulting, LLC, expects to see contactless payments increase to 10-20% of transactions at stores and ATMs as the result of the pandemic. It’s also evident that services such as PayPal and Venmo will increase as well. According to a recent Mastercard consumer poll , 51% of Americans are now using a form of contactless payment. Needless to say, the consumer shift to contactless solutions is more apparent now than ever before.

Increased E-Commerce Enhances the Potential for Fraud

Unfortunately, an increase in mobile payment and e-commerce means an increase in the potential for fraud. Data from Fortner points to two areas of increased fraud: delivery and promo abuse.

Shipping and Delivery

Customers who receive a product they wish to return will be unable to due to stay-at-home restrictions. Consumers may also take advantage of you by claiming they didn’t receive their order, the order came late or the order was incorrect.

Unfortunately, this often results in friendly fraud via chargebacks. Consumers will request a chargeback from their credit card company, disputing legitimate charges.

Promo Abuse

Many businesses are using promo codes to attract new customers during this uncertain time. Unfortunately, customers may commit fraud by opening multiple accounts to receive and use one-time promo codes. This can result in serious monetary loss for businesses unaware of these tactics.

Combat Fraud With Contactless Delivery and Payments by LISNR®

LISNR® helps companies prevent friendly fraud via our ultrasonic technology solution. Using sound and software to transmit data, we discourage friendly fraud due to proximity authentication. LISNR® technology reduces friction, helps identify bad actors, and works as a valuable signal for fraud departments.

Contactless delivery and payments won’t be going away anytime soon. It truly is the new normal. With LISNR®, you can future-proof your business while keeping the safety of your customers in mind, without sacrificing your bottom line to fraud. To learn more, send us a message.