The Best Mobile Payment Apps
Make Summer Shopping a Breeze With Mobile Wallet
Looking for a more relaxing summer this year?
Here’s one way to simplify things when it comes to making payments on the go. A mobile wallet will manage your credit and debit cards and allow you to pay with your phone without having to pull cards from your physical wallet.
It brings everything you use to pay for things into one place. It also make managing finances very convenient. You can pull up all the info you need quickly & easily. You can also save money and get great deals from mobile wallet “vendors.” Most of all, paying is a breeze. No more rifling through a wallet or purse to find that one card. Instead you can just tap, pay, and go!
As mobile payments are a newer industry, the technologies being used are still being developed. Many apps offer quasi-mobile payment solutions and others are full-on mobile wallets. The most popular technology, enabling mobile payments with the tap-to-pay feature, works off of Near Field Communication (NFC) technology.
From scanning a QR code on your phone, to using a key fob, to simply placing your phone near an NFC device or being able to complete a transaction at a local store right on your phone, mobile payment offers simplicity and convenience and is a trend that will not be going away anytime soon. Here are the top mobile wallet solutions out today.
What Mobile Wallet apps are available?
Passbook is already very familiar to Apple users for being able to store plane tickets and loyalty cards, but with the iPhone 6 came the ability to pay from a credit or debit card using the phone’s NFC technology (i.e. Apple Pay.) Just tap the app, enter your pin, then hold your phone near the NFC terminal at the cash register and you’re done.
The Passbook app can hold different passbook-enabled merchant apps, services, and credit cards. Once set up, you can easily manage, change or remove cards you’re no longer using.
Google Wallet (soon to be Android Pay)
Google Wallet Is a very popular mobile wallet that gives you the ability to store and manage your credit card information as well as gift cards, loyalty cards, and coupons. Merchants and vendors that are setup to work with Google Wallet are limited, like any mobile wallet. Google Wallet works with Android 2.3 or higher and iOS 6 or higher, but for NFC tap and pay capability you’ll need Android 4.4 or higher. One unique feature of Google Wallet is that you can get a Google Wallet card to carry with you to use with your Google Wallet balance, in case the mobile payment technology is not available where you happen to be shopping.
Softcard (formerly called ISIS) has offered mobile payment services for several years. They partner with credit card providers and merchants to offer their payment services, track local offers and run purchases directly from your credit card. The app requires a device with NFC and secure SIM capability to store your payment card information. Once the app has been set up, using different cards is very simple, only requiring a few swipes. The app is also set up to use your location to show you local coupons or offers.
Loop Wallet (recently purchased by Samsung)
Loop Wallet is designed to be an app to completely replace a physical wallet. The app is designed to store all of your cards – debit, credit, loyalty, gift, membership, and ID cards. Loop Wallet is unique in that it works with more types of smartphones than other mobile wallets, as it uses an additional piece of hardware to work with NFC. Making a mobile payment entails using either a keyring fob or case that fits on your phone that carries the NFC capability, that then transfers the account information to the cash register NFC device.
Kuapay is a newer mobile wallet service that allows you to store all your payment cards. What makes Kuapay unique is that it doesn’t rely on NFC for making the transaction. By integrating with merchants, the application handles the transaction completely within the app and requires no interaction with the cash register. By handling all the transaction process on the backend you can complete the payment right on your phone. The app makes mobile payment incredibly simple. There is also a QR code generator to extend the ability to use the app to vendors that are not partnered with Kuapay.
What About Security?
Security is one of the most important aspects of mobile payments. There are a few different forms of mobile security including fingerprint ID, a pin number, encryption of your stored data, or enhanced SIM technology; and several apps offer dual forms of security for each transaction. Be sure to research the platform you are interested in and make sure you are comfortable with the security options it offers.
A mobile wallet is intended to make your life more simple by reducing the amount of things you have to carry with you and keep track of. They also allow a single place to manage and access everything you need to make a payment, and is a great way to get excellent deals and local coupons. Now that you’re more aware of what mobile payment options are available, are you ready to make the switch and slim down your wallet?
Are you already using a mobile wallet? Which one is your favorite?