Payments processor Contis Group has begun offering a smartphone gift card platform that would allow retailers, restaurants, and other gift card issuers to sell and send gift cards using smartphones.
In terms of cardholder benefits, gift cards can be bought and sent in seconds via a smartphone and redeemed in store or online. Cardholders can instantly track how much they have left to spend and, as accounts are PIN protected, the funds are secure even if a phone is lost or stolen.
Companies like Google and Isis are developing mobile wallet applications in this country, and as near field communication technology, two-dimensional bar code technology, and consumer use of smartphones grows, there is likely to be an increase in mobile wallet adoption. For more information, see Mercator’s report: Fighting for Position: The Mobile Wallet Wars.