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Visa plans applications for Google, Nokia phones
NEW YORK, Sept 25 |
NEW YORK, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Visa Inc (V.N) plans to offer alerts, special offers, and ATM and merchant location services in a software application for phones powered by Google Inc's (GOOG.O) Android system by year-end.
The credit card company also said that in October, No. 1 mobile phone maker Nokia (NOK1V.HE) would start selling the 6212 phone, which users could wave at an electronic reader to make payments and use for remote payments and money transfers.
Visa said it was still developing its application to allow in-store "contactless" payments by cell phone for Android.
But it said these services --- already common in countries such as Japan -- may not take off for years here as U.S. stores would need to install new card readers and cell phones with the corresponding technology would need to be in wider use.
In the meantime, Visa said on Thursday that it would start by offering transaction alerts and special offers from merchants to Android users. The application will work with Google maps and location technology to help users find nearby cash machines and stores where special offers are available.
Visa said that for the first few months, the application will be available just to Android phone users who also have Visa cards issued by JPMorgan Chase (JPM.N) banks. It plans to open the application to other banks in 2009.
Earlier this week, Google unveiled the first Android-powered phone, which HTC Corp (2498.TW) is making and Deutsche Telekom's (DTEGn.DE) T-Mobile [TMOG.UL] unit is selling.
But the initial Android device does not include hardware to support contactless credit card payments.
Tim Attinger, Visa's global head of product development, said that while mobile payment services have been slow to take off, the company sees mobile phones as key to adding new customers. Only 1.6 billion Visa cards are in use today, compared with more than 3 billion people with cell phones.
"We're absolutely going to start porting financial services into those," Attinger said. (Reporting by Sinead Carew and Juan Lagorio; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)
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