Big telcos aim to replace credit cards with smartphones

Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile have joined forces to build a mobile commercial payment network that will let customers use smartphones as credit cards.

Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile have joined forces to build a mobile commercial payment network that will let customers use smartphones as credit cards.

Dubbed Isis, the proposed system will use near-field communication technology to send encrypted data from smartphones to payment processors. The system will only be able to send payments over a short distance and the carriers say it is "being designed and built to include strong security and privacy safeguards." The carriers expect that Isis will come online within 18 months.

Smartphones as credit cards: Possibly dangerous, definitely inevitable

Michael Abbott, a former financial services executive with GE Capital, has been tapped as Isis' CEO.  He will work with the three wireless carriers as well as Discover Financial Services to create a national payment infrastructure for the Isis system. Additionally, the companies are working with Barclays PLC, whose Barclaycard US is expected to be the first official issuer on the Isis network.

"We believe the venture will have the scope and scale necessary to introduce mobile commerce on a broad basis," Abbott says. "In the beginning, we intend to fully utilize Discover's national payment infrastructure as well as Barclaycard's expertise in contactless and mobile payments."

Users who want to use their smartphones for wireless payments will likely have to start adopting practices and applications that have long been staples of the corporate market.  In addition to using encryption for payments, smartphone credit-card users are also likely going to have to install some form of remote-wipe application that will let them erase any data on their smartphone if they ever lose it. Although remote-wipe capabilities have been staples of Research in Motion's BlackBerry devices for years, they've only recently come to more popular consumer devices such as the Apple iPhone and devices based on Google's open source Android operating system.

Read more about anti-malware in Network World's Anti-malware section.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags smartphoneswirelessNetworkingfinancePhonesconsumer electronicsindustry verticalsat&tCapitaDiscover Financial ServicesIsis initiative

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Brad Reed

Network World
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?