'Cash By Optus' Works, But May Have Limited Appeal

Optus have launched a new way to pay for things with the "Cash by Optus" range which promises "no more scraping for change or digging through your bag, simply grab your phone or payment accessory, wave and pay."

Only available to Optus customers, with a number of contactless device payment options, we tried it out to see if it does what it says on the box.

Image: Optus

After loading up to $500 on to the Cash by Optus app, you can use a range of products utilising contactless Near Field Communication (NFC) and Visa payWave technology to make purchases under $100.

You can choose from a band that contains an NFC chip, a SIM for NFC ready smartphones, and a sticker for non-Android smartphones.

The band is similar in look and feel to a fitness band, but a little thinner. The chip can be easily removed for attachment to any existing band you may own, which is handy and stops you from looking like an avid festival attendee.

Although a scenario when you leave the house without your phone seems a little unusual these days, there are definite benefits with the band option for runners, surfers, or even kids that need to access funds without carrying anything else.

Some teething problems using the band were anticipated, but everything went smoothly. Vendors offering the service (any that took contactless payments) reported no additional setup to accept the payments.

The sticker option is similar to those offered by banks like CBA, but since it doesn't link to your bank account directly there is an element of extra security.

The bottom line is, yes — it works. The extra step of adding funds to a separate app can be inconvenient, but safer. The service is only available to Optus customers — which may prove limiting to its popularity — but it is free.

Ben White, Acting Managing Director of Product and Marketing at Optus said, "Optus is excited to expand Cash by Optus with the introduction of the new payment Stickers and Bands. It has always been our aim to bring the ease and convenience of Cash by Optus to as many customers as possible, across a range of smartphones and these new payment accessories enable us to do just that."


Comments

    I honestly think this could be handy. despite no one will use it

      I mostly don't like the idea of having to put separate cash into it. I'd rather it linked to my bank account.

    you guys know that CBA have a paypass chip that you can put in any bracelet, armband or necklace right?

      I've had one in my watch strap for the last two years.

      It's fully waterproofed, too, so I can walk out of the surf and get lunch without worrying about my wallet.

        Never tried it underwater :) I got it in a wrist guard with a hidden pocket, people always trip out when I use it at the shops LOL

          People used to ask me if my Seiko analogue watch was an apple watch...

            I would tell people, its all-in-one chip is imbued in my hand, its a new government policy to track all their civilians, just to freak people out LOL

              Too many people would think that was an acceptable concession to make if it keeps us safe from terrorists, paedophiles, TV pirates, or other generic bogeyman used in the act of stripping freedoms.

              It's like people read 1984 and thought "yeah, that's not so bad. I liked the uniforms!"

      I once had the sticker, but are you saying they offer a smaller chip? Do you have a link to more info?

    Why bother, when you have the NAB app and the CBA app that does payments with NFC. Also "no longer have to find change" well the shop is still going to turn around and say "sorry $20 minimum" :-p

    I would use the Westpac app but they only support samsung phones. Idiots! I may just try this Optus solution since westpac can't get their act together.

    I enjoy using Cash by Optus using the Sim Card option in my phone. Only issue is the top up can take 2 to 5 days. Thats too long.

      I received my sticker in 24 hours, but to load cash from my bank account looks like it will take a few days as they want to confirm via a small deposit into my account with an ID.
      Then I have to wait for them to pull the funds.

      I had a virgin velocity card like this before my bank had tap-and-go cards, but I do like the idea of having a back-up sticker on my phone. Will have to see how I go. At least there are no fees for loading like other similar providers

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