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Q1 2012 Update
By Sheila Bacon, BGGMobile

The mobile payment landscape is constantly changing. In case you missed it, below is a quick re-cap of this quarter’s activities. Although we are seeing good traction by all the players in this space, there are many issues yet to be addressed. So as you are planning your business and marketing strategies you might want check back as we track this activity and offer insights as to how this may affect your business. If we missed something you think is important, please let us hear from you.

• Isis Mobile Wallet Will Be Available to More Than 100 Million U.S. Card Holders” (ISIS announcement with BarclayCard, JPMC, Capital One)
• Visa and Vodaphone mobile wallet has the potential to transform the way that people pay and are paid the world over.” (Visa/Vodafone mobile wallet announcement at MWC 2012.)
• There are plans to serve mobile wallet via Facebook using American Express is a Facebook application that allows users to send, receive, and request money without leaving the social platform. (Facebook)
• Moneto has announced that six Samsung Galaxy S Andriod smartphones will be supported by the moneto wallet in addition to the iPhone 4, 4S & 3GS. The Moneto mobile wallet offers a way for smartphones that do not have an inbuilt NFC chip, for example the iPhone, to use NFC technology via a device in the microSD slot and a receiver tag on the back by the battery. The beauty of this device is that your data is encrypted securely and held on the microSD card with a PIN, you can take the microSD device with you to your new phone including any sensitive data, which could help prevent any flaws such as the recent Google Wallet hack.
• Visa and Samsung have announced that they will be releasing a payment app for the London 2012 Olympics that will allow users to make payments at over 3000 payment terminals spread across many of the Olympic venues

• Seeking to encourage service providers to introduce NFC applications, France Telecom-Orange group said it plans to roll out 3 million SIM-based NFC phones this year and 10 million in 2013. (nfctimes)
• Despite the lack of NFC support in Apple iPhones, various companies have managed to find workarounds, such as NFC-enabled SIM cards. DeviceFidelity recently rolled out a microSD card that is slotted into an iPhone case, which in turn will be attached to the iPhone, thus giving the device NFC capabilities.

• Google Wallet has announced that 22 of the largest U.S. retail chains support its initiative, which enables consumers to make purchases by tapping their Android smartphone at 300,000-plus MasterCard PayPass-enabled merchant terminals.
• DeviceFidelity’s In2Pay iCaisse4 becomes the First NFC iPhone solution to be certified by MasterCard for commercial deployment with MasterCard Mobile PayPass
• Retailers getting nfc. “We are exploring potential solutions that would help us to deliver the fastest, most secure mobile-payment experience possible for our customers.” (New retailer-centric mobile payments scheme)
• PayPal launches card reader for mobile payments to rival Square, aimed at small businesses.
• Square has focused on making the Card Case app more visible, and rebranded the app, as well as updated the UI—gone is the wallet look. Card Case has been reborn as “Pay With Square.”
• Juniper Research estimated that worldwide mobile payment volume would reach an incredible $240 billion this year. By 2015, Juniper predicts, worldwide mobile and point-of-service (POS) terminal payments will reach an even more incredible $670 billion.

• Home Depot to bring the revolutionary POS technology to nearly all of its 2,000 stores in the US via PayPal mobile wallet debut at Home Depot.
• Best Buy will shift toward mobile sales and smaller stores in an effort to boost sagging revenue and compete with rivals like Amazon and Wal-Mart. Best Buy’s signature big box stores will be dialed back, and 50 will close in 2012
• Apple is clearly running a semi-sandboxed experiment inside selected retail stores. The experiment? Allowing customers to buy physical goods using Apple’s own virtual currency system (iTunes).” (Apple Easy Pay Trial)
• Many vendors question weather the mobile wallet is actually a container that lives in the cloud or on a phone, that is accessed via the mobile phone, and that aggregates and makes easily accessible several frequently used payment tender types. That’s the PayPal and Square models (cloud-based) and what Google, ISIS, AmEx/Serve, Visa, Device Fidelity In2Pay, MasterCard and many more are all pursuing too.
• Visa has announced its first certifications of NFC phones, approving six models to run its contactless application, payWave, on SIM cards. The certifications will be welcome news to banks and mobile operators in such countries as Poland, the United Kingdom, Spain and France that are planning their initial NFC rollouts using payWave.

Stay tuned.