Virtual cards that are accepted only in card-not-present environments, used by consumers primarily for online payments, has seen slow adoption. Net1 Virtual Credit Card, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Net1 UEPS Technologies, Inc. hopes to ramp up user adoption by introducing a solution tightly coupled to mobile networks and smartphones. According to The Bancorp Bank, the Mastercard issuer behind the product, “the VCpay application has been distributed to tens of thousands of smartphones with significant adoption anticipated in coming months.”
This is easy to believe since the first mobile adopter is Metro PCS which “is offering VCpay to its prepaid customers as an application that will be pre-loaded on new smartphones or can be downloaded on select existing devices.” Since Metro PCS has 7,634,135 subscribers and added 303,009 in the 3 month period ending June 30, 2010, the VCpay solution should easily be distributed to “tens of thousands of users” despite the fact that some Metro PCS devices can’t support the solution.
The larger question, of course, is how many of the distributed VCpay™ enabled phones will be activated; but the answer to this question is hard to determine.