Card.io: credit card photo app

While everyone is waiting around for NFC integration, new companies are trying to find ways to get into the mobile transaction space without the need for NFC devices.  We just saw Zoosh accomplish transactions with sound and now Card.io presents a way to use the camera to initiate a credit card transaction.

From the site:

“card.io provides a SDK for mobile developers to easily accept credit cards in their mobile apps. Typing on mobile phones is slow, and most consumers don’t have a separate hardware attachment to swipe a credit card. card.io solves both of these problems: customers just hold a credit card up to the phone, and card.io reads the card information using the phone’s camera. ”

How is this different from other payment solutions?

  1. No hardware needed. Consumers don’t need any additional devices to make a credit card purchase – card.io is usable by any customer with an eligible smartphone.
  2. Built for developers. While other payment solutions are meant for retail transactions, card.io was built to lower friction for mobile credit card purchases.
  3. Flexible. With card.io, we don’t force you to use a particular merchant account or payment gateway. Use the payment provider of your choice. Keep all your payment information in one place.”

From RRW:

“With a new software development kit (SDK) available now, the iOS (iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch) developers accepted into the company’s private beta can integrate the technology into their own app. Initially, as noted above, card.io is most interested in developers working in the e-commerce, local, ticketing, travel and daily deals space. It is already working with a few companies here, including MogoTix for event tickets, TaskRabbit for local services and SamaSource for donations.”

With card.io, you hold your credit card up to the phone. The software then "sees" the card information using the phone's camera and the payment is processed.

From Techcrunch:

“One important thing to note for iOS apps: while Apple mandates that all transactions for virtual goods be done through in-app payments using credit cards users already have on file, real-world goods can still use alternative payment flows that can include Card.io.”

From Gigaom:

Card.io CEO Mike Mettler

“CEO Mike Mettler said card.io is not looking at in-store retail but believes there’s a big opportunity to enable faster checkouts for mobile commerce without the need for additional hardware. The key is to make transactions as frictionless as possible.

“People don’t want to type in their credit card information on their phone,” Mettler said. “Our theory is if we make that an easy process, usage will follow.”

The company is looking at charging per scan but is open to striking revenue sharing license agreements with developers. It has a pretty impressive list of investors, including Jeff Clavier and Charles Hudson of SoftTech VC, Manu Kumar of K9 Ventures, former PayPal vice president Alok Bhanot and AdMob founder Omar Hamoui.”

About Daniel Davenport

Daniel is a digital media executive with internet and broadcast experience. Daniel is currently the executive strategy director at THINK Interactive.

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