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Mastercard Plans To Say Goodbye To Magnetic Stripes In 2024

The technology that makes magnetic stripes possible dates back to the 1960s.

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mastercard plans to say goodbye to magnetic stripes in 2024
Mastercard

The pandemic has changed a lot of things, including the way we pay for goods and services. According to the Mastercard New Payments Index, 1 billion more contactless transactions were processed in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the same period in 2020. What’s more, 45% of all in-person checkout transactions in the second quarter of 2021 were contactless.

Now, the global payments and a technology company has announced that it plans to start phasing out the use of magnetic stripes on its credit and debit cards in 2024.

As explained in the official announcement, the magnetic stripe will first start to disappear for Mastercard payment cards in regions where chip cards are already widely used, such as Europe. In regions where magnetic stripes are still used relatively often, the phasing out process will be delayed by 3 years. From 2029, no new Mastercard credit or debit cards will be issued with a magnetic stripe.

“It’s time to fully embrace these best-in-class capabilities, which ensure consumers can pay simply, swiftly, and with peace of mind,” says Ajay Bhalla, president of Mastercard’s Cyber & Intelligence business. “What’s best for consumers is what’s best for everyone in the ecosystem.”

Also Read: Abu Dhabi Has Dropped Business Setup Fees By Up To 94%

The technology that makes magnetic stripes possible dates back to the 1960s, and we now have much more convenient and, above everything else, safer alternatives. One such alternative is the global EMV chip standard, which was introduced in the 1990s, enabling cardholder details to be held more securely on small integrated circuit chips embedded into cards.

Cards with EMV chips are currently responsible for 86% of in-person card transactions. We also have contactless payments, which can be made either using a card or with a modern, NFC-enabled smartphone. Since the outbreak of the pandemic, many policymakers and retailers have been endorsing contactless payments as the best payment method available, and the trend will likely continue even in the future.

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Amazon Partners With Music Streaming Service Anghami

Prime subscribers in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates will automatically get a free six-month subscription to Anghami Plus.

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amazon has partnered with music streaming service anghami

Amazon’s Prime subscription service offers an excellent value proposition because it includes not only free shipping but also access to a huge library of songs, among other things. Unfortunately for music lovers in the MENA region, the Amazon Prime music library includes mostly songs from English-speaking countries. But that’s about to change soon because Amazon has partnered with Anghami, the first legal music streaming platform and digital distribution company in the Arab world.

As a result of the new partnership, Prime subscribers in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates will automatically get a free six-month subscription to Anghami Plus, a premium subscription service that offers an unlimited access to Anghami’s large content catalog and unlocks extra features such as the ability to play songs offline, display lyrics, and enjoy music in high quality.

amazon prime anghami plus offer

“This collaboration with Anghami is a perfect example of how we work together with leading local brands to innovate on members’ behalf, offering them the best experience possible,” said Ronaldo Mouchawar, Vice President of Amazon Middle East and North Africa. “We’re excited to see Prime members in both Saudi Arabia and the UAE enjoy Anghami Plus and all it has to offer, alongside other shopping, savings and entertainment benefits already included in their membership”.

The partnership with Amazon is guaranteed to help Anghami realize its global ambitions and compete with other music streaming services, most notably Spotify and Deezer.

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Several months ago, Anghami entered into a merger agreement with publicly traded special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) Vistas Media Acquisition Company Inc. The goal is to list Anghami on the New York NASDAQ exchange, giving it access to global growth capital.

Currently, Anghami provides its users access to more than 57 million Arabic and international songs, as well as podcasts and live radio. Amazon Prime subscribers who decide to keep using Anghami can get an additional 50% discount for the next six months.

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