CIBC Suretap comes to Android; Rogers gets nod for banking start-up

CIBC Suretap comes to Android; Rogers gets nod for banking start-up

CIBC in Canada has expanded support for its mobile payments app from BlackBerry-only to Android devices, as wireless partner Rogers receives approval to incorporate as a bank.

The CIBC Mobile Payments App is now available for the Samsung Galaxy S3 smartphone and will expand to additional Android devices in the coming weeks. The app can be downloaded from Google Play. Contactless Visa or MasterCard credit card payments using the app are accepted at thousands of retailers in Canada for purchases under $50.

David Williamson, senior EVP and group head, retail and business banking for CIBC says: "Since launching mobile payments in 2012, the number one question from our clients has been about when they can use the app on their Android phones, which speaks to the importance of today's announcement."

A recent CIBC poll conducted by Harris/Decima found 68% of Canadians between ages 18-44 say they own a smartphone and 46% of these owners say they are interested in paying for everyday purchases using their smartphone.

"To understand the potential for mobile payments, you just have to look around at the number of Canadians who take their smartphone with them everywhere they go," notes Williamson. "Whether it's walking by the coffee shop on the way to work, or picking up a few items at the grocery store, Canadians always have their smartphone within reach, making it a convenient way to pay for everyday purchases.

CIBC could soon face direct competition from mobile partner Rogers, which last week reported that the Canadian Minister of Finance has issued Letters Patent, incorporating Rogers Bank. Rogers now has 12 months to move forward with the application and meet the requirements to set up as a banking shop.

The mobile carrier filed an application in September 2011 to set up a banking business primarily focused on credit card services.

David Robinson, vice-president, emerging business, Rogers, says: "The Rogers credit card program represents a new growth opportunity while giving customers an opportunity to accumulate value in a future Rogers loyalty programme."

Separately, RBC and Bell have partnered to pave the way for mobile payments via BlackBerry Z10, Q10, Bold 9900, Bold 9790 or Curve 9360, and a range of Android devices from manufacturers such as Samsung, Sony, HTC, and LG. The two companies expect to make the service broadly available by the end of the year and will commence road testing with consumer and merchant customers over the summer.

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