Visa and Nokia have launched a worldwide system to allow mobile phones to function as a digital wallet to make electronic payments.
The service works by swiping a phone across a scanner to read the information on a microchip embedded within the handset. Users can then confirm the purchase by pushing a button on the phone.
The technology has been already been trialled by Visa in the US and Malaysia.
Payments at the Philips Arena in Atlanta were processed using mobile phones, while Visa partnered with Maybank, Maxis Communications, Nokia and Vivotech to run a mobile payment programme in Malaysia.
"Visa has long realised the importance of the mobile channel to the future of payments and as a medium to deliver consumer services," said Patrick Gauthier, senior vice president for innovation at Visa International.
"The launch of the mobile platform is a significant industry milestone because it will enable innovative trials and go-to-market strategies for mobile payment services globally."
Gauthier added that the service could be used to deliver remote payments, person-to-person payments, mobile coupons and account management services.
Mary Ann O'Loughlin, senior vice president for consumer practice at analyst Ovum, suggested that the complex mobile payment ecosystem presented a challenge for those entering this new space.
"By developing the mobile platform and engaging key industry stakeholders, Visa is leading the charge to simplify and jump-start the development of innovative mobile payment services," she said.
Nokia and Visa call up mobile payments
By Matt Chapman on Jan 11, 2007 2:19PM