Cash will soon be consigned to the history books, predicts Telefónica's German arm as it prepares to roll out mobile person-to-person and NFC payment services.
From the middle of next month, the giant telco's German customers will be able to carry out near real-time mobile-to-mobile transfers using the 'mpass Geld senden' service.
Customers who register and download the Android or iOS app log in with a username and password and can then send money by entering the recipient's number, the amount to be transferred and, if they want, an accompanying message.
In addition, February will see an NFC-based mobile wallet piloted, enabling participants to make contactless payments at shops accepting MasterCard PayPass.
Customers with an NFC-capable smartphone - either the Samsung Galaxy ACE2 or S3 - and who have ordered the free pack with an NFC-capable SIM card are eligible to take part.
Once the SIM is inserted, the user will automatically receive a text message with a download link, which allows them to install the wallet. To link a card, the tester then registers to pay using mpass in shops.
Telefónica says it will expand the wallet over the next year to include additional applications and functions such as other payment cards, vouchers and loyalty schemes. A bank will shortly be joining the scheme, allowing the integration of a digitalised credit card, promises the telco.
René Schuster, CEO, Telefónica Germany, says: "Soon, children will only know from history books what a wallet and hard cash are. Mobile payment with your smartphone has arrived in Germany. Our customers will soon be transferring money mobile-to-mobile and paying in shops using their digital wallet."