Mobile Wallets — Possible?

Remember early days, in the 1980’s, when the “mobile” phone was about the size of a stone and nearly as heavy? Hardly any people had the ability to possess one during those times, simply because of the cost of over $3,000 a piece. Now, let’s flash forward to today where now virtually everybody from elementary school age kids to our grandparents, are sporting their very own phones. The private mobile phone is now an item we just cannot live without. If you’re like many people, it’s probably one of the first things you check each day and the past thing before you hit the sack for the night. However now, phones tend to be more than just phones, aren’t they?

Over the years, our personal/mobile phones are becoming “smart “.They can do a whole lot more than just make phone callsĀ create passbook passes. They can buy your meal, open the entranceway to your car, switch on the security system at your property, book a college accommodation and on and on. They can access the internet with lightning speed utilizing WIFI connectivity, 3G, 4G or whatever cell service. We also utilize them to take pictures, text quick messages to friends or colleagues or use their QR reader or the phone’s camera to see a signal to get more information regarding something or service. We could also receive mobile texts, once opting in, from merchants to alert us of these “deal” for the day.

In newest times, cellphones have begun to be used, especially by smaller merchants, to process payments for goods or services. This is accomplished by attaching a “dongle” or mini POS type card swiper to the audio jack of the phone. You will find products like Square, PayPal’s Triangle, Intuit’s GoPayment and many others. We’re also seeing that lots of merchant services providers are offering FREE cell phone POS devices. But most of which will be addressed in an impending article.

However, with all having said that, the key intent behind this article is always to discuss using your phone as a “mobile wallet “.Let me be a bit clearer on what it really is when we’re speaking about a “mobile wallet “.Basically it would allow us, as consumers, to displace the plastic cards in our real wallet with some data stored on our phones “virtual” wallet. What’s the likelihood that we’ll see mass conversion to this kind technology in the US? Really, the idea of using the phone as a “wallet” is nothing new in Kenya or Japan, for example. In other countries like Sweden and Canada, mobility is taking off. However the question that I pose to you here’s this… does it seem sensible to place your entire personal and financial information on your own phone? Could we potentially transfer to a cashless society and would consumers quickly adopt to the technology to make use of their phone like a budget?

With identity theft continually on the rise, it’s not likely any time soon that consumers will be ready to expose themselves to the potential risk. Developers for this technology assure us that the information utilized in your mobile phone is encrypted and therefore safe. Access to the stored data can only just be accomplished by the use of a six digit pin number. So, while this brings a level of comfort, within my mind, still the apparatus necessary to even process transactions, using your phone is pretty scarce. Mobile wallets can only just work, with current technology at the least, on NFC (Near Field Communication where you simply wave your phone facing a payment device) enabled phones which are very limited today.

In Europe, as an example, talk of Mobile Wallets becoming more mainstream has been going on since 2004 and still, hasn’t really gained a solid foothold there. So, while this might be the direction we are headed, as a society, don’t search for it to take place any time soon on a grand scale. So, meanwhile, just grab the plastic, keep spending and do your part to maneuver the economy along. Help you next time.

My name is Michael Saum and I’m a 64 year old semi-retired, merchant services rep. Within my current capacity, I write informative, articles in accordance with the acceptance of credit/debit cards in your organization I also provide my comprehensive, FREE, email course, on the subject of credit card processing with NO SOLICITATION or HYPE. You can enroll by visiting the next website:

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