Mobile payment guidelines released

Todays' Slaw post: The Canadian Bankers Association just released a mobile payments reference model as a voluntary guideline for development of mobile payments at point-of-sale in Canada. In practice this means that your phone will have a mobile wallet that replaces your debit and credit cards. Phones with NFC (near field communications) will be able to use this feature to pay by holding it near a payment terminal similar to how we can now use the paypass feature on our cards. The CBA press release has links to the full guideline, and a summary version.

From the press release:

The voluntary guidelines, technically known as the Mobile Reference Model, will serve as a blueprint for how mobile payment capabilities can be offered in the Canadian market, including guidelines around how information is exchanged among various parties to a transaction including financial institutions, payment card companies, telecommunications companies and merchants. While voluntary, the financial institutions that developed the guidelines are committed to these principles in the mobile market, and these guidelines are intended to create a path to help all market participants move forward in developing mobile payment solutions.

Canadians are looking forward to being able to pay at point-of-sale with their mobile device, and today’s announcement of guidelines for mobile payments in Canada brings this closer to making it a reality. By developing a set of guidelines that all participants in the payments marketplace can work within, the goal is to ensure safety, security and ease of use for merchants and consumers while allowing for innovation and competition among market participants.

It will take some time for the technology to become widely adopted, but expect a lot of competition in this market. Consumers in some other countries are already using this technology. Rogers and the CIBC announced just after the CBA release that they are working on a mobile payments solution.