Recap: Silicon Alley Day

The App Developers Alliance was thrilled to attend Silicon Alley Day in New York City at the offices of Alliance member, MasterCard. At this event, experts from across the payments and transactions industry convened to discuss the current state of digital payments.


Elie Toubiana, VP of Engineering from Alliance member CardFlight, kicked off the day’s events with an excellent presentation on “What the Payments Industry Can Learn from Silicon Alley.” Acknowledging the probability of flaws in early versions of products, Toubiana’s encouraged the audience to stay positive and instead focus on innovation when creating their products for consumers.

He cited the example of Google Chrome vs. Microsoft Internet Explorer to clearly demonstrate his point. Since 1995, Microsoft has only unveiled 11 major releases of Internet Explorer. In comparison, Google Chrome was first launched in 2008 and has gone through 39 releases over the past seven years. It’s no coincidence that Chrome has captured 61% of worldwide market share, while Internet Explorer has slipped to 8%. Customers desire continuous improvement to the products that they use, and companies that seek to innovate will be the most likely to stay ahead of their competitors.


A panel discussion on “Securing the Future of Payments” featured James Anderson (SVP Mobile & Emerging Payments) of MasterCard, joined by executives from Socure and Bluefin.

Apple Pay’s emergence in the mobile payment space dominated this conversation. Anderson used the example of a recent business trip where he used HotelTonight to book a last minute reservation. Instead of entering his credit card payment info along with billing address and zip, all he had to do was click the Apple Pay option in the app and use his fingerprint ID on the iPhone to complete the payment. Apple Pay has raised the bar for frictionless mobile payments according to Anderson. It’s now up to banks and other mobile payment platforms to elevate their own products in response.


Silicon Alley Day provided attendees with a nice mix of educational and networking opportunities and it was an ideal forum to learn more about the future of the digital payment space in an intimate setting. Thanks again to MasterCard for hosting this event!


Posted by:

Max Rollinger

Member Programming Manager