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Using Dwolla, TMG makes first Google Glass app to move hard currency

Now with only a few swipes, and a tap or two, Google Glass wearers around the country can pay merchants using Dwolla. But the Des Moines-based payments startup isn't the one behind the development. The Members Group (TMG), a Des Moines-based financial services company that provides payments processing solutions, announced the Google Glass app—called See2Pay—during

Now with only a few swipes, and a tap or two, Google Glass wearers around the country can pay merchants using Dwolla.

But the Des Moines-based payments startup isn’t the one behind the development. 

The Members Group (TMG), a Des Moines-based financial services company that provides payments processing solutions, announced the Google Glass app—called See2Pay—during its Executive Summit in Lake Tahoe, Calif., on Tuesday. 

“The idea came to us really through our research and a curiosity among our financial institutions as we thought about what the future of payments looked like,” Ryan Anderson (right), TMG’s vice president of product, told SPN. 

Using the startup’s API and Google’s Mirror API, the app streams the Dwolla network straight to Google Glass. See2Pay simply geolocates the Glass wearer, locating Dwolla merchants around them, and allows transactions to be made over the startup’s network.  

See2Pay is a product of TMG’s Innovation Lab, a program Anderson says allows the company to explore ideas that may not fall into its normal product development spectrum. 

“We can cultivate and develop different ideas because we don’t have the same product development lifecycle attached, so we can move a little swifter,” he said. “The whole idea is to push ideas out that help the broader developer landscape as well.”

In this case, that means releasing the product on GitHub for other developers to tinker with. Built with help from Iowa State student Brett Neese, this is the first TMG Innovation Lab project to be released to the public. Anderson says the app also is the first to move money over Google Glass. While a number currently exist for Bitcoin, See2Pay traffics hard currency over Dwolla’s network. 

He adds that the decision to turn to Dwolla for the project’s payment network was a logical—the financial services company was part of the startup’s $1 million Series A round in 2010—as well as practical one. 

“Today, paying with cash or plastic really isn’t painful, so the next generation of payment methods have to be incredibly simple for consumers to adopt,” Anderson said. “Wearables can offer that and it’s really convenient to use the Dwolla network.”

Anderson says the creation of See2Pay is only one of the ways TMG hopes to stay in front of financial and payments trends to better serve its clients. 

“The financial institutions we work with are wanting to understand how their clients of the future will be paying, and we want to help them stay relevant,” he added.  

A number of other TMG Innovation Lab projects are currently in the works, Anderson says. 

To see what the app looks like in action, check out Dwolla’s blog post about See2Pay.

 

Read more about what people have built using Dwolla’s API: “Iowa State student creates PayHere (for Dwolla) with startup’s API demo.”

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