Visa announced plans to make mobile payment-related services broadly available to United States consumers by the end of the year. Central to this effort is Visa’s delivery of mobile applications for the Android platform, which will be available for download on Android-powered handsets and initially available to Chase Visa cardholders.
The first set of services that Visa is planning to develop for Android will allow Chase Visa cardholders to receive notifications to their mobile devices about transaction activity on their accounts; obtain offers from a wide array of merchants; and use the built-in location-based technology developed by Google to quickly map nearby merchants where they can redeem Visa offers and locate ATMs that accept Visa.
During an introductory period, Visa mobile services that will be developed for the Android platform will first be offered to Chase Visa account holders. Following this initial launch phase, Visa plans to work with additional card-issuing financial institutions to extend availability of its mobile services for Android to their Visa account holders. Visa is also developing a payment application that will enable consumers with Visa accounts to make mobile payments in retail locations nationwide, or while on the go, over wireless networks.
The Visa mobile applications developed for the Android platform will initially deliver three powerful services:
- Alerts: Consumers will receive near real-time notification of purchase activity based on customized cardholder preferences. The consumer will be able to personalize the types of alerts delivered to their mobile device according to pre-selected parameters, such as the size of the transaction, or whether the transaction is in foreign currency. Because these alerts are triggered by the transaction as it passes through the Visa network, consumers will receive notifications almost immediately, typically before they even leave the store. This adds a new layer of peace of mind when using Visa, and a new way to combat fraud.
- Offers: Consumers will receive targeted offers from merchants directly to their phone. These offers – ranging from discounts to loyalty offers – could be based on a consumer’s previous purchase activity. For consumers and merchants alike, this service will ensure the most relevant offers are sent in a timely manner, helping increase merchant traffic, loyalty and customer satisfaction.
- Locator: The Locator service is expected to integrate with technology developed by Google, such as Google Maps and Google location-based services, to show consumers nearby locations of merchants sending them offers, or of an ATM that accepts Visa. The location would be called out on a map displayed on the mobile device screen.
Over the last two years, Visa has actively engaged with financial institutions, wireless operators, handset manufacturers, and technology providers to develop and test innovative mobile services. Visa is currently testing mobile payments, money transfer and value-added services with consumers in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Korea, Malaysia, Singapore, Taiwan, the U.K., and the U.S.
Visa’s investment in its mobile technology comes as more consumers in both developed and emerging economies adopt mobile devices and play a central role in commerce. The development of mobile applications for the Android platform is the latest example of how Visa is making mobile commerce a global reality. [source: visa]