Mobile payments being held up by highschool drama

Tuesday, January 27, 2009 12:52
Posted in category Featured, Tech Politics


So you want to lighting your purse?  Or wallet?  Well if you’re in one of the few countries that allows you to use  your cellphone as a credit/debit card you’re good to go.  Simply swipe your phone over a scanner and it gets routed to a particular card number.  Now, here in the U.S. we’ll have to wait just a little longer.  Like usual, the little girls running the big corporations involved including manufacturers, cellular carriers, financial institutions, and retailers just can’t agree on how to split all of the money.  I have a crazy idea.  Really, it’s so far out there.  Here it is: If there are 4 parties involves in a transaction, split into 25% slices, 5 parties 20% slices.  It really isn’t rocket science.  Whatever the case, hopefully they stop their highschool drama and get moving so we don’t drop another few spots on the worlds “techiest countries” list.  There is hope however…

Key Pousttchi, head of Wi-mobile research group at the University of Augsburg in Germany predicts that by the year 2012, most of cell phones sold in the U.S. will have the mobile payment option.  Let’s hope so.  It can’t be that hard to figure out and in reality the technology isn’t new.  Japan’s NTT DoCoMo mobile operator has been offering the service for over 5 years now!  5 years.  You might be asking yourself how did they do it?  Well, NTT DoCoMo controls over 50% of the cellular market so they had size on their side when muscling the other parties involved to cooperate.  While here in the U.S. we are twiddling our thumbs.  Again, the monitary bickering mentioned above is pretty much the biggest hurdle.  Can we please all just get along guys?!  Another hurdle is that some people lose their phones like they do their keys and aren’t to thrilled with keeping sensitive financial information on our phones or use phones in that nature.  However, instances such as these are just as easily remedied as if it were a credit/debit card.  Calling the bank and disabling the account tied to the phoen is all that is needed.  Ok, so disabling/re-enabling bank accounts isn’t the easiest thing to do, but you know what I mean, it won’t be brain surgery or anything.

Privacy concerns are still a big issue that people have to come to reality with.  The technology used in the credit card marketplace and what will be used on these mobile payment enabled phones will stand up to hackers and thieves and eventually will be the preferred payment method.  I mean everyone wants to be able to leave the house with one less item attached to their hip right?  Besides not having to carry extra junk around, there wouldn’t be any extra fees to use mobile payment enabled cellphones according to Joanne Trout, Vice President of worldwide communications for MasterCard Worldwide.  All that needs to happen is the parties involved must come to some sort of conclusion or else we can easily go another five years and still be talking and dreaming about this.  Hopefully sanity will come swiftly to those involved.

So, in the meantime, if you’d like to get your cellphone paying fix, you’ll have to head on over to Japan where it is by far the most progressed and matured.  Don’t forget to bring back some sushi for me!

Source: Mobile Burn, NYT

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One Response to “Mobile payments being held up by highschool drama”

  1. Gib says:

    January 27th, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    If someone jacks your phone with the credit card ability on your phone, you could be screwed as they run around town with your phone while you borrow another phone.

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