Designing and delivering smarter payments capabilities

Designing and delivering smarter payments capabilities

A specialist payments partner to banks, corporate customers and government departments is using Erlang to design and deliver the next generation of automated payments systems and ATM switching solutions.


The customer's objective is to deliver a new generation of their payment switch while reducing the overall cost of the solution. The switch has to run on commodity hardware, but still have the same level of performance and resilience as their current solution, which is based on HP non-stop hardware.

This would enable them to deliver their solution worldwide and target a diversity of customers that need an innovative payment switching solution. The same solution could be deployed on low-cost hardware for a small customer, or on more powerful and expensive hardware for large customers.


The customer started working internally on a prototype. Seeing the potential advantages of using Erlang, they contacted Erlang Solutions to produce a proof of concept, in order to define the architecture of the solution.

The development follows Agile principles, in which all Erlang Solutions developers and consultants are trained. This choice of this methodology allows the customer to adapt the priorities in order to deliver a product as close as possible to their current business needs.

After the proof of concept, the customer received more funding to start the implementation of the product. The implementation is performed by phase, with each phase having clear objective and deliverables.

One of the first objectives set by the customer was to demonstrate the performance of the solution. This was done successfully, with the system performing 800 transactions per second in early tests. With that, the project enters its next phase, in which more functionality will be added to make the system a complete, high-performance and highly scalable payment switching solution.

Why Erlang

  • Erlang provides a development environment for building real-time high availability systems with fast time-to-market requirements.
  • It is oriented around concurrency, a key requirement for a payments system. Processes are very lightweight, which allows millions of simultaneous processes to be created.
  • Erlang's set of enterprise libraries has fault tolerance, scalability and transactional integrity built in.

Customer benefits

  • The customer will have a robust and flexible system to support their services.
  • The modular solution built will allow the customer to focus on key components to deliver to the market in a short time and to extend the system with more functionality when required.
  • The solution proposed by Erlang Solutions can evolve according to changes in the customer's business needs, allowing them to be a great deal more competitive and versatile in the market.