When JPMorgan Chase on March 10 acquired MCX’s payment technology to help with Chase Pay, it likely received a bargain. After all, it’s hard to envision an entity in a weaker negotiating position these days than MCX, which has already surrendered on delivering its own payment system. But a bargain is a bargain only if the value is greater than the cost, no matter how low that cost.

The MCX technology is based on QR codes, and even Walmart’s Walmart Pay is struggling with the same issues that have routinely plagued not-so-easy-to-scan-the-first-time QR codes.

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