As the title succinctly states, NFC hits PayPal! I don’t want to pat myself on the back or anything, but I gotta admit I called this. Back in the my piece on Near Field Communication, I talked about the future of mobile payment through NFC. I can, in no way, claim I was the first to recognize the potential of NFC, but I’m proud nonetheless.
I’ve always been a fan of PayPal. It is the by far the best internet based payment platform, and it’s continuing to get better. It supercedes it’s competitors by creating a easy, yet trustworthy, method to link directly with any bank or credit card. It also makes it seemless to transfer funds between friends and family or to businesses like eBay.
Their mobile app is equally impressive, and I’ve even noticed they created a semi-effective “split the bill” option. However it is still rather limited, and doesn’t stack up to BillMonk. (It boggles my mind why no company has made a viable alternative to BillMonk. But since I don’t want to get distracted by this tangent, I’ll stop here. Still, for those who don’t know what BillMonk is, and PARTICULARLY if you have roommates, check it out NOW.)
Now with PayPal’s incorporation of NFC payments between mobile devices, future generations will NEVER have to deal with splitting multiple credit cards at dinner EVER AGAIN. My generation does not like cash, so it makes large meals or other similar gatherings awkward and annoying for the business employees. With NFC enabled PayPal transfers, one friend can proudly front the bill, and everyone can instantly pay him their respective share. No hassles, and no more excuses for those cheap friends.
PayPal isn’t the only one ving for the NFC mobile payment market. The almighty Google announced Google Wallet in March, and they plan to roll out their finished product soon. Also BlingNation, with their trademarked BlingTags, is already well in the game. Although a relatively small startup, they lead the pack since they have already implemented a working model in the silicon valley. Additionally, they still have one leg up on PayPal because their payment system is not mobile to mobile based. They are consumer to business based. So rather than paying a friend, you are paying at the store front, but now you use your phone rather than cash or credit.
I’m thrilled for this announcement. It’s another step closer to a wallet-less world. And given my recent debackle with losing my debit card, it can’t come soon enough!