Today’s official start to the holiday shopping season could be defining for digital wallets.
The holiday shopping season is now underway and services such as Google Wallet and Isis are hoping that Black Friday mobile payments will be the start of the explosion of use of these services by consumers.
Until now, smartphone based transactions at points of sale have experienced little more than struggle.
However, these mobile wallets have now gone national, and this is the first holiday shopping season in which this was the case. Moreover, there are now options that don’t require consumers to have to use NFC technology in order to use the services. For example, Google Wallet has opted to make it possible for transactions to be made through QR codes so that it will be compatible with devices that are not equipped with near field communications. These quick response codes could make a considerable difference in the willingness – and ability – of consumers to use their smartphones for making Black Friday mobile payments that will carry over to the rest of their holiday purchases.
As the day that sets the scene for the rest of the season today’s Black Friday mobile payments will give a hint of what is to come.
Of course, those are far from the only options that will be available for paying with smartphones. PayPal and MasterCard, for instance, also have their own services – both of which have QR codes among their available technologies for completing transactions. Other players include Visa and Square, the latter to a lesser extent.
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What companies are now watching is the rate at which this technology will be used, today. The service providers are looking to see how many consumers are using it and how much they are spending through its use. At the same time, the merchants will be watching to see whether or not accepting these transactions will be worth their while, or whether consumers are more satisfied with their traditional credit and debit cards.
Black Friday mobile payments are certain to be defining for the start of the industry and will help to gauge the trends that can be expected throughout the entire shopping season until the end of the year.