US Bank is partnering with handset manufacturer Nokia and MasterCard to test mobile phone payments for purchases under $25 in Spokane, Washington.
Programme participants receive a new Nokia mobile phone equipped with MasterCard PayPass payment functionality, which allows them to pay for purchases at the checkout with a tap of their mobile phone.
MasterCard says that more than 80,000 merchants accept PayPass, including many in the Spokane area, such as Regal Cinemas, McDonalds, Jack in the Box and 7-Eleven. Gonzaga University will also accept PayPass at vending machines across its campus as part of the pilot.
Consumers participating in the trial can protect their payment account information on their phone with a password. Should a customer misplace his or her phone, the payment feature can be disabled remotely with a call to US Bank customer service.
Finnish company Venyon has been contracted to provide secure over-the-air delivery for the US Bank trial. The white-labelled application also allows for remote personalisation and management of the payment feature.
Research released today by hi-tech analyst group In-Stat estimates that between eight million and 30 million consummers in North America will be using NFC-based contactless payments by 2012.