What is GCash?
GCash is a digital wallet that holds your money, plain and simple. Each amount in the wallet has an equivalent amount of peso in real life. You put your money into it, and the cash being digital makes it easy to do transactions with it, empowering the user to leverage it to do work without as much effort.
Introduction to Digital Wallets
Before we go through our guide, let’s talk first about digital wallets. What are digital wallets?
Think about your real-life wallet. You most likely have your cash there. You would also have your debit or credit cards.
Now think of your smartphone. With all of the wonders of apps in recent years, we have started to see the multitude of uses a smartphone can do. We don’t even leave the house without it. So why not combine the two together? Eventually, someone did, and the digital wallet is born.
Power of Digital Wallets
We have seen in recent years how financial technology evolved as a natural application of the power of the Internet. With the gradual improvement of our network connectivity, we can leverage the power of our always-on data connection to power our financial transactions via the Internet.
A case in point is China. It has embraced the digital wallet to the fullest, and most of the transactions are via the app, and cash is becoming increasingly rare. The effect is dramatic because so many applications can only come from innovation via technology. One can be online e-commerce, and another can be QR-based transactions.
For example, in a lot of restaurants in China, you can just sit down at a table and scan the QR code on it. Your app will open that restaurant’s web page and will lead you to its online menu. You can order what you want and also pay right there on the spot. The waiter will just serve you your order at your table, without you even standing up. How cool is that?
Another is the universality of their platform. You can go to the grocery, take a taxi, or rent a bike using an app. You can get loans, buy train tickets, buy street food, donate to street performers, and if your phone battery gets low, you can even rent power banks via an app.
Now here in the Philippines, we currently have those types of applications used by a handful of digital wallets too, even though they are at an early stage. GCash leads this pack and right now it’s at the top in terms of market penetration.
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We describe in depth what GCash is, and run through common features - cash in, cash out, buy load, pay bills, send money and QR payments.