Isis, Micros launch mobile wallet services in Verizon HQ
Isis--the nationwide mobile commerce network spearheaded by Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) and T-Mobile USA--is now live, although its long-planned consumer trials in Austin, Texas, and Salt Lake City remain on hold. Instead, partner Micros Systems has launched Isis SmartTap contactless payment services at the Aramark cafeteria located inside Verizon's Basking Ridge, NJ headquarters.
Mobile Commerce Daily reports that Micros--whose cloud-based Simphony point-of-sale platform is the first retail software solution to integrate SmartTap support--has installed POS terminals equipped with Near Field Communications-enabled readers at all 10 checkout stations in the cafeteria. Aramark customers with an NFC-enabled phone who've installed the Isis mobile wallet app can pay for meals by tapping their device against the POS unit.
"We are currently focused on building a comprehensive mobile commerce experience in Isis' two launch markets, Austin and Salt Lake City," Jaymee Johnson, head of marketing at Isis, told Mobile Commerce Daily. "Deployments outside of these markets are primarily driven by partners like Micros."
Isis initially planned to begin consumer trials this summer, but last month, the company scrapped those plans because it is still fine-tuning the overall customer experience. Johnson said Isis will share launch specifics and additional updates later this month.
"At launch, consumers in Austin and Salt Lake City will be able to use the Isis mobile wallet at hundreds of contactless-enabled merchant locations in each market," Johnson added. "In addition to national partners such as Macy's, Jamba Juice, Aéropostale, Foot Locker and Whole Foods, we have partnered with many iconic local merchants including Book People, Iron Works and University Co-Op in Austin, and Deseret Book, Energy Solutions Arena and Utah Transit Authority in Salt Lake City."
NFC World reports Isis has signed an agreement with vending machine services firm USA Technologies to convert up to 7,500 POS terminals to accept Isis payments. According to an SEC filing, "Isis and [USAT] have agreed to work together to solicit owners and operators of vending machines located in the greater Austin, Texas and Salt Lake City, Utah markets to utilize [USAT's] ePort and related ePort Connect Service, which accept the Isis Mobile Wallet… The Marketing Agreement provides that Isis shall pay to [USAT] a subsidy for each vending machine located in the above-mentioned markets which on or before Dec. 31, 2012 utilizes the Company's ePort technology which accepts the Isis Mobile Wallet. This date may be extended by the parties to March 31, 2013."
Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile first announced Isis in late 2010. In addition to funding purchases, the Isis digital wallet allows consumers to redeem coupons and use store merchant loyalty cards. Isis has so far inked financial partnerships with American Express, Chase, Capital One and Barclaycard, also establishing alliances with point-of-sale terminal manufacturers VeriFone, Ingenico, ViVOtech and Equinox Payments. In addition, six device manufacturers--HTC, LG, Motorola Mobility, Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM), Samsung and Sony--have committed to introducing products that support the Isis platform.
Isis competitors include the NFC-based Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) Wallet. Last month, Google announced that usage has doubled in the six weeks since the company rolled out a cloud-based version supporting all major credit and debit cards, although just how many consumers are actually using the payment app remains unknown. Isis also faces challenges from non-NFC services like Square and PayPal Here.
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