The funny thing, notes BLOOMBERG BUSINESS WEEK, is that the way American Express is leveraging its rewards isn't disruptive. Here you can read the article. Although the company has its own version of the disruptive digital wallet, it is finding that, no, not everyone wants disruptive.
In this initiative, American Express allows its card holders to use their reward points as cash-like currency. Some taxi cabs are being equipped with VeriFone Systems as payment devices. Passengers use their American Express credit card to pay for the ride with their points.
What this is showing is that consumers prefer to transition slowly from their payment status quo. Sure, developers are gushing about all the apps for the smartphone which allow you to pay for your coffee with a swipe. And venture and angel investors are funding those kinds of disruptive ventures. However, the marketplace isn't ready for most of that. American Express got smart and migrated away from an aggressive focus on the smartphone. Life, I predict, will be pretty good for American Express through cool new but non-disruptive things it does with its credit cards.