Its been heating up all Fall but several big announcements today point to the coming NFC enabled devices here in the US. Bling Nation’s work around may have been novel but it is going to get steamrolled by the big guys.
First up, Eric Schmidt announced that the next version of the Android OS, code named Gingerbread, will support near field communication. We know Apple is interested in NFC so now the two best mobile OS platforms in the US will have NFC.
From the Isis website – “The Isis™ mobile wallet will eliminate the need to carry cash, credit and debit cards, reward cards, coupons, tickets and transit passes, fundamentally changing how you shop, pay and save. All with your phone.”
The company is lead by Michael Abbott, formerly with GE Capital.
From the press release:
“Our mobile commerce network, through relationships with merchants, will provide an enhanced, more convenient, more personalized shopping experience for consumers,” said Michael Abbott, Chief Executive Officer of Isis. “While mobile payments will be at the core of our offering, it is only the start. We plan to create a mobile wallet that ultimately eliminates the need for consumers to carry cash, credit and debit cards, reward cards, coupons, tickets and transit passes.”
“We believe the venture will have the scope and scale necessary to introduce mobile commerce on a broad basis. In the beginning, we intend to fully utilize Discover’s national payment infrastructure as well as Barclaycard’s expertise in contactless and mobile payments” said Abbott. “Moving forward, Isis will be available to all interested merchants, banks and mobile carriers.”
And that’s the real story – scale. Until now US based companies were driven to using stickers to try and enable mobile payments. With the recent developments at Apple and Google and the big three carriers all getting behind the same system, US mobile users will get to realize the many benefits (and hopefully very few dangers) of mobile payment.