As smart vending machines proliferate, so do digital payments

April 18, 2017

A new generation of Internet-connected vending machines could make digging for spare change and fiddling with uncooperative dollar bills a thing of the past. At a growing number of locations, customers can now pay by credit card and mobile wallet.

The market for so-called smart vending machines that accept credit cards and other payment types is growing quickly, presenting a revenue opportunity for payments companies. Today, only about 10 percent of the world’s 17 million vending machines are Internet-connected—a figure that is expected to reach 20.3 percent by the end of 2020, according to the business intelligence firm Berg Insight.