Using Your Phone As Your Credit Card Could Be Coming To U.S. Soon

While using your mobile phone to make purchases has been around in Eurpoe and Asia for a number of years, there always seem to be some legal or financial hurdle stopping it being offered in the United States. Well not any more, if reports by Internet Retailer are accurate.

"In a move that could one day replace wallets with mobile phones, three major wireless carriers --AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless--have signed on to participate in a mobile payments network that uses smartphones and Near Field Communication technology to enable consumers to use their phones to pay for goods in stores," Internet Retailer stated.

Apart from the scepticism and fear of losing your phone and your credit information at the same time, the technology still needs to be adopted by retailers.

"The long-standing barrier blocking wireless providers from launching mobile payments has always been credit. A carrier might feel comfortable letting a consumer buy a cheap digital download like a ringtone or a game and charging it to a phone bill, but they are leery of extending big lines of credit. That's why getting mobile payments going full steam requires getting banks and other credit card issuers on board," Internet Retailer noted..

We do have the "tap and go" payment processing for credit and debit cards in a lot of places, so extending the technology may not be too difficult.

The biggest part of this is the increased power of mobile technology. Tie it in to mobile marketing, like the checking of inventory availability and your cell phone becomes the ultimate connected tool.

About the author

Frank Watson has been involved with the Web since it started. For the past five years, he headed SEM for FXCM -- at one time one of the top 25 spenders with AdWords. He has worked with most of the major analytics companies and pioneered the ability to tie online marketing with offline conversion.

He has now started his own marketing agency, Kangamurra Media. This new venture will keep him busy when he is not editing the Search Engine Watch forums, blogging at a number of authoritative sites, and developing some interesting online community sites.

He was one of the first 100 AdWords Professionals, a Yahoo and Overture Ambassador, and a member or mod of many of the industry forums. He is also on the Click Quality Council and has worked hard to diminish click fraud.