Macquarie can’t nominate date for NPP launch

George Lekakis Payments, mobile & wallets

Macquarie is still unable to say when it will link retail banking customers to real time payments despite recently updating its terms and conditions to include provision of  Osko and other NPP-enabled services.

The country’s fifth largest deposit-taker is one of a raft of Australian banks that have struggled to add NPP services to its mobile and internet banking platforms.

Others yet to introduce fast payments include ME Bank, HSBC, Suncorp, NAB’s UBank platform, Citibank Australia and Westpac’s regional bank brands.

None of these banks have amended their electronic banking terms and conditions – an indication that they are at least months away from adding NPP capability to their platforms.

A Macquarie spokesperson said the bank remained committed to introducing NPP functionality before the end of the year but was unable to nominate a likely launch date.

“We’ve updated the terms and conditions,” the spokesperson said.

“We actually haven’t set a firm date for the launch but it will be before the end of the year.”

Efforts to fast-track the rollout of NPP functionality at Westpac’s regional banking arms – St George, Bank SA and Bank of Melbourne – has progressed slowly this, but some St George customers have reported on social media sites in the last month that have begun to receive real time payments from account holders at NPP-enabled banks.

However, there is still no indication when St George customers will be able to initiate real time transfers using PayID.

The painfully slow rollout of NPP capability at Westpac’s banking arms has underlined the fragmented nature of the technology infrastructure of the group.

While the bank claimed a decade ago that it expected to harvest big cost savings on unifying the platforms of each of its bank brands, the reality is that St George and Westpac continue to service their respective customer bases with different technology.

Customers of other major banking groups are also reporting mixed experiences accessing NPP services.

Bankwest customers appear to be receiving a more reliable and efficient NPP services compared to customers of the CBA-group’s masterbrand.