Amazon is convinced of the added value of the digital euro, which the European Central Bank (ECB) aims to introduce. The company has built a prototype for its application in e-commerce payments.
The central bank for the eurozone is exploring the possibilities for a digital currency. It is intended to serve as a stable alternative to cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ensure that the central bank money remains accessible in the digital age. Last spring, the ECB called on front-end providers in the European payment market to contribute ideas and build concrete applications.
The digital euro must be a stable alternative to crypto coins
Prototype of an e-commerce transaction
Amazon was selected last fall to build a prototype and explore the online payment capabilities of the digital euro. The American company states: “Our aim in the exercise was to successfully deliver a front-end prototype of an e-commerce transaction and integrate it with the Eurosystem’s back-end infrastructure prototype, thereby confirming that a potential digital euro could be smoothly integrated into the existing European payments landscape.”
Four other entities also had the opportunity to investigate specific applications of the digital euro, including the Italian bank Nexi, the Spanish CaixaBank, the French payment processor Worldline, and a consortium of banks and payment processors known as the European Payments Initiative (EPI). The EPI aims to roll out a unified payment solution across the continent, and recently made acquisitions to achieve this goal. The ECB supports the initiative.
The ECB has presented the findings and lessons learned from the five prototype developers in a report. The central bank concluded: “The tests showed that it is possible to smoothly integrate them, while leaving ample scope for innovative features and technologies. The findings also confirmed that a digital euro could in principle work both online and offline, using independent designs.”
‘This would also increase the resilience of the digital euro.’
The developed prototypes will not be used as a basis for future payment solutions.
Positive outlook from Amazon
Amazon welcomes the introduction of the digital euro. The company states: “We at Amazon believe a digital euro can be a tool to foster innovation and increase the efficiency of payments.” The e-commerce giant is optimistic that the new public infrastructure will deliver “significant benefits” to EU residents, merchants and the broader EU economy.