& cplSiteName &

Retailers Join to Boost (or Fragment) mCommerce

Sarah Thomas
8/15/2012
50%
50%

12:25 PM -- Wal-Mart, Best Buy, 7-Eleven and Target are among the big-name retailers teaming up to take on the wireless operators and Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) in the crowded mobile commerce market.

The companies, along with 11 others, announced the formation of the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) on Wednesday. The venture plans to build a mobile app that will let customers make payments, redeem coupons and rebates and store their loyalty program information on their smartphones.

When I saw this news, I thought, "Great, the retailers are an important piece of the value chain for mobile payments." But, then I realized that the MCX is being positioned as a competitor to Google, operator initiatives like Isis and even Square Inc. and other credit-card company services, rather than a link in the chain. Now, it just seems like yet another half-baked solution in an increasingly congested market. (See Mobile Commerce Sidesteps the Carriers , Learning to Play Nice With NFC and Verizon Blocking Google Wallet? Poor Decision.)

Sure, the retailers -- which do a combined $1 trillion in yearly sales -- are powerful players since they own the point-of-sale and decide what credit cards to accept. But, it seems to me they would be much better off working with other players in the market to make existing services more robust and, importantly, widely accepted. (See Mobile Money: What's the End Game? )

I understand that everyone -- wireless operators, software companies, handset makers and vendors are guilty too -- wants to be the mCommerce leader rather than just one part of the puzzle, but it's frustrating to see the market becoming so fragmented before it has even taken off.

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Snuffaluffagus
50%
50%
Snuffaluffagus,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:23:49 PM
re: Retailers Join to Boost (or Fragment) mCommerce


This makes sense to me.  You see it as fragmentation, I see it as retailers finally controlling thier own fate.  MCX will most likely be ran as a non profit or minimal profit organization.  This could potentially give the retailers at least $10 Billion more in profits.


Typical Visa/MC/AMEX and I suspect mobile providers/Google take 3-5% of sales.  MCX with no profit motive could likely do this for no more than 2%.  Leaving at a minimum 1% or $10 Billion in the retailers pocket.


Plus they plan to make this an all inclusive app that has store coupons, loyalty program etc.  Mobile operators like Google/VZ/ATT are only interested in taking a cut of the sales and not in their loyalty programs or coupons leaving this to others to handle.  I believe the average consumer would prefer to have single app that does everything for them with retailers and not have to deal with multiple apps.

More Blogs from Que Sera Sarah
The results of Women in Comms' first survey are in, and they show that the more things change, the more they stay the same (among many other things!).
Join WiC for its fourth networking breakfast in Denver on Thursday, Sept. 28, where we'll come together to discuss why the future is brighter than ever for women in tech.
Nicole Engelbert, the director of research and analsis for Ovum, will be joining Women in Comms on Wednesday, Aug. 2 at 11:00 a.m. EST to talk all things women in tech.
Consulting firm will build 'inclusion councils' with white men in the mix instead of employee resource groups for women and minorities alone.
How many more women have to come forward and public apologies issued before we can just agree that now is the time to stop being creepy and start being decent human beings?
Featured Video
From The Founder
Light Reading is spending much of this year digging into the details of how automation technology will impact the comms market, but let's take a moment to also look at how automation is set to overturn the current world order by the middle of the century.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
November 1, 2017, The Royal Garden Hotel
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue, London, UK
November 2, 2017, 8 Northumberland Avenue London
November 10, 2017, The Westin Times Square, New York, NY
November 16, 2017, ExCel Centre, London
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
May 14-17, 2018, Austin Convention Center
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Muni Policies Stymie Edge Computing
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/17/2017
Is US Lurching Back to Monopoly Status?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
Pai's FCC Raises Alarms at Competitive Carriers
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 10/16/2017
'Brutal' Automation & the Looming Workforce Cull
Iain Morris, News Editor, 10/18/2017
Worried About Bandwidth for 4K? Here Comes 8K!
Aditya Kishore, Practice Leader, Video Transformation, Telco Transformation, 10/17/2017
Animals with Phones
Selfie Game Strong Click Here
Latest Comment
Live Digital Audio

Understanding the full experience of women in technology requires starting at the collegiate level (or sooner) and studying the technologies women are involved with, company cultures they're part of and personal experiences of individuals.

During this WiC radio show, we will talk with Nicole Engelbert, the director of Research & Analysis for Ovum Technology and a 23-year telecom industry veteran, about her experiences and perspectives on women in tech. Engelbert covers infrastructure, applications and industries for Ovum, but she is also involved in the research firm's higher education team and has helped colleges and universities globally leverage technology as a strategy for improving recruitment, retention and graduation performance.

She will share her unique insight into the collegiate level, where women pursuing engineering and STEM-related degrees is dwindling. Engelbert will also reveal new, original Ovum research on the topics of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, security and augmented reality, as well as discuss what each of those technologies might mean for women in our field. As always, we'll also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air and chat board.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Partner Perspectives - content from our sponsors
The Mobile Broadband Road Ahead
By Kevin Taylor, for Huawei
All Partner Perspectives