Vodafone has partnered with Visa and Carta Worldwide to bring new capabilities to Vodafone Wallet. The operator’s customers will soon be able to add payment card details to their Vodafone Wallet, and make payments using their NFC enabled smartphones at contactless terminals. As part of the agreement with Visa and Carta Worldwide, the new Vodafone Wallet services will be enabled in European markets starting in the second quarter of 2015.
The new contactless service requires Vodafone NFC SIM which will support a range of Android smartphones. There are certain aspects that customers need to comply with:
- Input payment card details to the Vodafone Wallet app, where an alias of each card is stored securely in the Vodafone NFC SIM
- Confirm ownership of the card using Verified by Visa authentication
Users can also check their mobile payment transaction history using their phones, wherever they are. Payments are automatically debited from the selected bank cards, which are protected with a user-defined 4-digit PIN for higher value payments. Carta Worldwide is providing Vodafone with the payment card enabling technology as part of the agreement.
Vodafone Wallet is currently available in Germany, Spain, the UK, Italy and The Netherlands. Customers can already add loyalty cards into the Vodafone Wallet, as well as pay with Vodafone SmartPass that was launched in partnership with Visa in 2013. This evolution of the Vodafone Wallet is part of the Vodafone mCommerce strategy designed to provide a mobile alternative to coins, banknotes and plastic cards.
Mark Ritzmann, Head of mCommerce at Vodafone Group, said in an official press release, “The digital wallet just took another step forward. With a few clicks, customers will be able to add payment cards to their Vodafone Wallet and use Android smartphones to pay at contactless terminals. Thanks to our agreements with Visa and Carta Worldwide, using bank cards stored on Vodafone Wallet is fast, secure and simple.”
Vodafone had developed the mobile wallet service in collaboration with Visa last year, launching it first in the UK market. The wallet service was made available for use on the London Underground and even allowed P2P payments. M-Pesa, Vodafone’s popular mobile money transfer and payment service, also entered European markets last year. It was launched in Romania in March, and is also being positioned by Vodafone as an emerging markets solution for Europe.