The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) has published draft specifications aimed at streamlining the online checkout process and making internet payments easier and more secure.
W3C is an international consortium where member organisations, a full-time staff and the public
work together to develop web standards. More than 400 organisations are members, including Bloomberg, BPCE, Deutsche Telekom, Ingenico Labs, Rabobank and Worldpay.
The consortium believes that making purchases on the internet, particularly on mobile, can be a frustrating experience. Every website has its own flow and its own validation rules, and most require shoppers to manually enter the same information time and again. Likewise, it is difficult and time-consuming for developers to create good checkout flows that support various payment methods.
The three draft specifications include a payment request API, which allows merchants to accept different payments methods with minimal integration. Secondly, a specification which defines payment identifier strings to help determine which parties support which payment methods. Finally, a specification for basic card payment, which describes the data formats used by the payment API to support card payment (e.g. debit or credit card).
Comments are welcome on the first public working drafts of the specifications.