A one-click online payment system using Facebook and Twitter that could boost Internet sales for newspapers, music vendors and other low-priced goods and services is being tested by a major European media company, according to its developer.
The Internet poses an increasingly urgent problem for newspaper publishers who want to make money from the articles they put on their websites, but who are worried they will deter visitors by asking them to take out a full subscription.
The new system, developed by a start-up company in Belgium, means Internet surfers can pay to read a single article or download a piece of music without having to fill out forms or enter their credit card details on the website.
The company, called Paycento, uses the fact that surfers are often logged in any way with their profiles on social networking sites like Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter.
It means that visitors to a website can pay small amounts with a single click, much in the same way that they would click a ‘Share’ or ‘Tweet’ button to post an article on their social network profile.
“Those social identity networks also are really identity providers … so we piggyback on that,” Pieter Dubois, the company’s 41-year-old founder, said.
Dubois, a former IBM executive, set the company up in the middle of last year because he saw a need for easy-to-use online payments.