Amazon’s U.S. patent for one-click payments will expire this year, allowing other retailers to incorporate the same technology on their websites. This huge differentiator has until now allowed Amazon customers to complete a purchase with a single click from stored shipping and payment credentials.
This prevents customers from having to continuously add their shipping address and payment information. Amazon Echo owners can also complete a purchase with a single voice command.
The one-click feature has given Amazon a huge competitive edge over other online retailers, making it easier and more convenient for customer purchases, building loyalty and repeat sales. Anyone wanting to use it needed to license it from Amazon; Apple paid an undisclosed sum to use it for app store purchases. Once the patent expires, the door will open wide for them to launch one-click payment without bowing toward Seattle.
MCM Musings: One-click payment technology is great as it makes the customer experience as easy as possible, reducing cart abandonment. Should Amazon be worried that the technology is freed up for others to use? Probably not. Has it been one of several ways Amazon has kept one step ahead of the competition? Absolutely. I don’t see Jeff Bezos losing any sleep over the patent expiration as Amazon will continue to innovate in yet-unimagined ways.