Isis, the mobile commerce joint venture created by AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile US Inc., and Verizon Wireless, announced plans to roll out the Isis Mobile Wallet nationwide later this year, following successful pilots in Austin, Texas and Salt Lake City.
In related announcements, American Express will introduce American Express Serve to the Isis Mobile Wallet as a co-branded account, enabling millions of Americans to tap and pay using their American Express Serve account.
Also, Chase plans to allow Chase Freedom, Chase Sapphire, Chase Slate, and JPMorgan Palladium cardholders to be able to load their cards into the Isis Mobile Wallet and tap to pay at thousands of retail locations. Chase is the U.S. consumer and commercial banking business of J.P. Morgan Chase and Co.
“Over the past nine months, we have proven the power of an open platform, creating an ecosystem of literally hundreds of partners dedicated to making mobile commerce a reality,” says Michael Abbott, CEO, Isis. “As part of our commitment to consumers, we are incorporating feedback from our pilots into the next generation of the Isis Mobile Wallet as we prepare for national availability later this year.”
The Isis Mobile Wallet uses near field communication (NFC) technology to allow consumers to pay, redeem coupons, and present loyalty cards with a tap of their smart phone. To use the Isis Mobile Wallet, consumers need an NFC-enabled smart phone and a SIM-based secure element, which together make the device Isis Ready.
Nearly 20 million smart phones in market currently feature NFC technology, with millions more being shipped each month by three of the nation’s leading carriers—AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile US Inc., and Verizon Wireless. Thirty-five mobile devices across AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile US Inc., and Verizon Wireless currently support Isis and that number will continue to grow. Support for iPhone, Windows Phone, and Blackberry 10 is expected to be introduced later this year.
“NFC technology is important to Samsung and is a standard feature in our flagship smart phones, including our Galaxy S 4, as a powerful way for sharing through S Beam, and a tool for secure mobile payments with Isis,” says Kevin Packingham, chief product officer, Samsung Telecommunications America. “At Samsung, we are committed to providing our customers with the most innovative technologies available and the Isis Mobile Wallet is just one example of that commitment brought to life.”
Consumers who activate the Isis Mobile Wallet can pay at retail locations that accept contactless payments, the number of which has steadily grown over the past several years. Twenty-five of the top 100 national retailers have deployed or are deploying contactless terminals. Aite Group projects that 1.3 million locations in the United States will have contactless-ready payment terminals by year end, making it the most broadly deployed mobile payments technology at the point of sale.
“Working in partnership with Isis, we have been witness to the power of mobile payments and loyalty,” says Rick Kanemasu, vending technology strategy, Coca-Cola North America Group. “More than one-third of active Isis Mobile Wallets users in Austin have loaded a My Coke Rewards card into their Wallet since our pilot began and 90% of these are new to the My Coke Rewards program. Coca-Cola is engaging with new and existing customers as never before and we look forward to expanding nationwide with Isis later this year.”
“Jamba Juice harnessed the power of mobile commerce by introducing offers to the Isis Mobile Wallet in Austin and Salt Lake City,” says James White, CEO, Jamba Juice. “Our offer program was successful in driving incremental foot traffic, increasing the frequency of consumer store visits and introducing Jamba Juice to first-time customers. We are now making plans to expand nationally with Isis so that all our franchisees can enjoy the benefits we have seen in our pilot markets.”
Isis will be incorporating key lessons learned from the pilot of the Isis Mobile Wallet in Austin and Salt Lake City into its planned national rollout later this year. Findings from the pilot launched in October 2012 show that:
- On average, active Isis Mobile Wallet users tap more than 10 times per month.
- Two-thirds of active users opted in to receive offers and messages from their favorite brands, following an average of seven brands.
- Contactless acceptance nearly quadrupled to more than 4,000 locations in Austin and Salt Lake City.
- More than 80% of transactions take place at everyday spend locations such as quick-service restaurants, coffee shops, gas stations, convenience and grocery stores.
- Wallet users engaged in loyalty and offers tap up to two times more frequently than users who only make payments.
Customers will be able to use eligible American Express Serve accounts within the Isis Mobile Wallet to:
- Load funds to their American Express Serve account from a variety of sources, including a bank account, debit, credit or charge card, or by receiving money from another American Express Serve account.
- Load cash to their American Express Serve account.
- Tap and pay with their phone at any NFC enabled retail location that accepts American Express.
- Use their American Express Serve Card at any merchant that accepts American Express Cards, both online and offline.
- Pay bills electronically.
- Make person to person (P2P) payments to other American Express Serve accountholders.
- Add funds using direct deposit.