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Visa to offer digital wallet

By Marcie Geffner ·
Thursday, June 2, 2011
Posted: 3 pm ET

Not to be outdone by Google, electronic payments giant Visa has announced its "next generation of payments solutions," saying in a statement that the new digital e-commerce, mobile and social networking options will be just as secure, reliable and easy as the current Visa point-of-sale payments, i.e., plastic in-your-wallet credit cards.

The new services, to be introduced later this year, are expected to include a digital wallet and customized mobile payment options. The wallet will support near near-field communication, or NFC, payments through the Visa payWave application and enable e-commerce, mobile devices, micropayments and person-to-person payments.

Beyond that, the details are sketchy, though the digital wallet "is expected" to include:

  • A click-to-buy feature that allows consumers to make payments using an email address, alias or online ID and password, instead of a billing address, credit card account number and expiration date.
  • A cross-channel payments feature that will consolidate multiple Visa and non-Visa payment accounts.
  • A menu that lets consumers set preferences and customize and control the features.
  • An option to receive offers of discounts and promotions from merchants.

Other functions will be tailored or bundled to fit local credit card usage patterns and norms in such emerging markets as Russia and India and other countries in Africa and the Middle East.

Visa CEO Joseph W. Saunders said in a statement that the new "solutions" will give consumers more choice, convenience and control, reduce the incidence of abandoned online shopping carts, create new Visa cardholders and expand access for people who have a mobile phone but little access to financial services.

Banks that have signed on include: Barclaycard US, BB&T Corp., Card Services for Credit Unions, ICBA Bancard, First Financial Bank of Ohio, Nordstrom fsb, Pentagon Federal Credit Union, PNC Bank, PSCU Financial Services, Regions Bank, Royal Bank of Canada, Scotiabank, TD Bank Group (U.S. and Canada) and U.S. Bank.

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