Technology

The business and culture of our digital lives,
from the L.A. Times

AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon partner on Isis mobile payment project

AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless want to replace your wallet with a smartphone. 

The companies, three of the country’s largest mobile carriers, are partnering to create a national “mobile commerce network” to allow customers across the country to make purchases with just a wave of an iPhone or Android.

The Isis project, announced Tuesday, will be headed up by Michael Abbot, a former financial executive with GE Capital.

The Isis setup would tap smartphone and near-field communication technology, which passes encrypted information between devices at close range but doesn't require contact.

That differs from technology from VeriFone or Square, which use accessories that can read a physical credit card. The companies behind Isis said they are developing security and privacy safeguards.

“While mobile payments will be at the core of our offering, it is only the start,” Abbot said in a statement. “We plan to create a mobile wallet that ultimately eliminates the need for consumers to carry cash, credit and debit cards, reward cards, coupons, tickets and transit passes.”Credit card

Over the next year and half, the venture will be rolled out in “key geographic markets,” the companies said, eventually becoming available to all merchants, banks and wireless service providers.

Isis will be hooked up with Discover Financial Services’ payment network -- currently offered by more than 7 million U.S. merchants. Barclaycard US is expected to be the first issuer.

The mobile payment system is already popular in countries such as Japan. Card issuers such as Visa and Mastercard have also been testing options that would likely compete with Isis.

RELATED:

Consumer Reports calls for protections on mobile payments through phones

Google's Eric Schmidt shows off mystery Android phone, talks mobile payments

VeriFone follows Square's lead with its own iPhone credit card payment system

-- Tiffany Hsu

Photo: Square, a credit-card reader made for smartphones, is plugged into an Apple iPhone. Credit: Jin Lee/Bloomberg

 
Comments  ()

Connect

Recommended on Facebook


Advertisement

In Case You Missed It...

Videos

How to Reach Us

To pass on technology-related story tips, ideas and press releases, contact our reporters listed below.

To reach us by phone, call (213) 237-7163

Email: business@latimes.com

Andrea Chang
Armand Emamdjomeh
Jessica Guynn
Jon Healey
W.J. Hennigan
Tiffany Hsu
Deborah Netburn
Nathan Olivarez-Giles
Alex Pham
David Sarno


Categories


Archives