Rumor Mill: Isis kicking off mobile payment trials this month
Isis, the nationwide m-commerce network spearheaded by Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ), AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) and T-Mobile USA, is reportedly ready to begin consumer trials in the Salt Lake City and Austin, Texas, Aug. 20.
The Isis kickoff date was first reported by TMoNews, noting that participants will be able to process contactless payments using three Near Field Communications-enabled smartphones: The HTC Amaze 4G, Samsung Galaxy S II and Samsung Galaxy S Blaze 4G. Computerworld notes rumors indicating the Isis pilots also will support other Android devices as well as Research In Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) BlackBerry smartphones equipped with special sleeves containing NFC chips.
An Isis spokesperson declined to comment on the report, stating only that the service is "on track to launch in its pilot markets, Austin and Salt Lake City, this summer."
Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile USA first announced Isis in late 2010. The Isis digital wallet allows consumers to conduct point-of-sale transactions, redeem coupons and use store merchant loyalty cards via NFC-enabled devices and corresponding point-of-sale reader technologies. Isis has inked partnerships with card services partners American Express, Chase, Capital One and Barclaycard. In addition, six device manufacturers--RIM, HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung and Sony--have committed to introducing products that support the Isis platform.
In related news, NFC consulting and testing services provider FIME announced Thursday morning it will collaborate with Isis to certify mobile devices and secure elements across the m-commerce network. FIME said it will work with manufacturers to evaluate their products and certify compliance with Isis technical specifications, guaranteeing all technologies meet security and industry regulations.
Earlier this week, Isis also said it will team with retail fuel dispenser manufacturers Wayne and Gilbarco Veeder-Root to integrate support for its tap-and-pay application into selected fuel pumps in the Salt Lake City and Austin areas. The agreement enables Isis users to pay for gasoline, present loyalty cards and redeem offers by tapping their phone at the pump.
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