AT&T and Verizon Take on Card Networks with Mobile Payment System Plans

by George Peabody 0

By George Peabody, Director, Mercator’s EmergingTechnologies

The mobile operators are, finally, getting into payments -and on their terms. According to anarticlein Bloomberg, smartphone mobile carriers are planning aventure to displace credit and debit cards with smartphones -giving the card networks a run for their money. Smartphones will bethe way…along with a little help from payments industry experts,a bank (Barclays), and a card network (Discover). While this willbe a pilot initially, the fact that Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobileare jointly engaged makes all the difference. Now we just have tosee what Apple’s role will be, given the patent applications it hasfiled for POS merchandising and payments. This is the tipping pointfor NFC payments and it is a direct challenge to the other cardnetworks.

AT&T Inc.andVerizon Wireless, the biggest U.S. mobilecarriers, are planning a venture to displace credit and debit cardswith smartphones, posing a new threat toVisaInc.andMasterCard Inc.,three people with direct knowledge of the plan said.

“Retailers may be eager to help another network afteryears of fighting over transaction fees set by Visa and MasterCard.The merchants pressed Congress last month to approve caps oninterchange, or “swipe” fees, for debit transactions and filed a2005 federal antitrust lawsuit that is still pending. The U.S.Department ofJustice is weighing whether to bring acivil lawsuit against Visa, the company said last week.”

View full article:AT&T, Verizon to Target Visa, MasterCard WithSmartphones