Posted by & filed under business models, e-payment, Ecommerce, M-commerce, smartphones.

Description: Instead of swiping a plastic card at the checkout counter, consumers would merely wave their phones.

Source: NYTimes.com

Date: March 23, 2011


Mobile phone carriers, banks, credit card issuers, payment networks and technology companies are all vying to control these wallets. But first, they need to sort out what role each will play and how each will get paid.

The stakes are enormous because small, hidden fees that are generated every time consumers swipe their cards add up to tens of billions of dollars annually in the United States alone.

“It all comes down to who gets paid and who makes money,” said Drew Sievers, chief executive of mFoundry, which makes mobile payment software for merchants and banks. “You have banks competing with carriers competing with Apple and Google, and it’s pretty much a goat rodeo until someone sorts it out.”

In one camp are the long-established players. Payment networks like Visa andMasterCard, along with banks that actually issue credit cards to customers, want to stay at the center of any payment system and continue to collect their fees from merchants. Read rest of story

Questions for discussion:

  • Why is adoption of theses ” e-wallets ” not happening at a faster rate in North America?
  • What strategy would you employ to speed up the adoption process of this new payment technology in the marketplace?

One Response to “Swiping Is the Easy Part”

  1. Corey Bedard

    The rate at which e-wallets are being adopted in NA is remaining low for many of the reasons stated in the article. Without the compliance of the credit card companies, banks, and phone companies, this concept is going to remain in low demand. Of course, this is not the only reason for the low adaptation rate. Many consumers in North America, including myself, probably fear for the safety of this concept. I feel that it is way too possible for technology junkies in the world to tap into someones mobile device, (they can crack a computer so why not an iPhone or BlackBerry), therefore leading to theft and misuse of the e-wallet. Of course it is possible for someone to pickpocket you and take your actual wallet as well, the physicality of that is way more noticable than that of online scamming. Sometimes it could be weeks before someone realizes that they are being robbed when it is done virtually, but it would be meer minutes before I realized my wallet isn’t in my pocket. It seems almost unnecessary becuase how much room does a couple of cards really take up?

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