Verizon Tries Mobile Payments Solo

Carrier branches out from the Isis JV to offer mobile payments for online purchases via a partnership with Payfone

Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms

June 13, 2011

2 Min Read
Verizon Tries Mobile Payments Solo

Verizon Wireless isn't waiting on its Isis venture to dive into mobile payments. The carrier announced Monday it's teaming up with payments processor Payfone to let consumers make online purchases from their mobile devices with direct carrier billing as one payment option.

The Payfone-powered service will let Verizon's customers pay with one click via a credit card for physical items or via Verizon's billing channels for digital goods like music or online books. The companies say they're focusing on simplicity, flexibility and security, including pre-authorization and authentication as part of the platform.

Verizon says the service will be complementary to the mobile payments offerings that spring from Isis, its joint venture with AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), T-Mobile US Inc. , Barclays and Discover. The JV is working on building up the payments ecosystem before it launches and is reportedly in talks with Visa to bring Near-Field Communications (NFC)-enabled mobile payments to market in 2012.

Why this matters
With the level of interest in mobile payments and NFC at an all-time high, time to market is critical. That's especially true as Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) is teaming up with Sprint Corp. (NYSE: S) to trial a Mobile Wallets service and just last week, Visa acquired South African startup Fundamo to build a mobile payments service in emerging markets.

Verizon's new service with Payfone doesn't get into NFC, but it shows that the carrier is serious about having a well-rounded mCommerce portfolio and isn't waiting on Isis to make a move.

For more

  • NFC to Push $50B Over-the-Air by 2014

  • PayPal Sues Google for Mobile Wallet

  • Google Taps Sprint for Tap-to-Pay

  • Carriers Can't Take the Credit

  • Operators Vie for SIM-Based NFC Control

  • Here Come the NFC Phones

  • Sprint Stakes Its mCommerce Claim

— Sarah Reedy, Senior Reporter, Light Reading Mobile

About the Author(s)

Sarah Thomas

Director, Women in Comms

Sarah Thomas's love affair with communications began in 2003 when she bought her first cellphone, a pink RAZR, which she duly "bedazzled" with the help of superglue and her dad.

She joined the editorial staff at Light Reading in 2010 and has been covering mobile technologies ever since. Sarah got her start covering telecom in 2007 at Telephony, later Connected Planet, may it rest in peace. Her non-telecom work experience includes a brief foray into public relations at Fleishman-Hillard (her cussin' upset the clients) and a hodge-podge of internships, including spells at Ingram's (Kansas City's business magazine), American Spa magazine (where she was Chief Hot-Tub Correspondent), and the tweens' quiz bible, QuizFest, in NYC.

As Editorial Operations Director, a role she took on in January 2015, Sarah is responsible for the day-to-day management of the non-news content elements on Light Reading.

Sarah received her Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia. She lives in Chicago with her 3DTV, her iPad and a drawer full of smartphone cords.

Away from the world of telecom journalism, Sarah likes to dabble in monster truck racing, becoming part of Team Bigfoot in 2009.

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