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MasterCard, startup PaidPiper tap into credit cards for mobile payments

Stephen Lawson | May 8, 2012
PaidPiper, a startup that will debut at the CTIA Wireless show this week, is developing a mobile money transfer system suited to developed economies where the credit-card infrastructure is dominant.

PaidPiper can also be used to give incentives in person, from phone to phone, which is ideal for small businesses, the company said. Rather than having to follow up an in-store encounter with a later contact via e-mail, a merchant can reward the customer immediately, PaidPiper said.

Though the idea of typing in long credit-card numbers may seem cumbersome, PaidPiper's service takes advantage of a massive infrastructure that is already ubiquitous in most advanced economies. For example, MasterCard has 1.7 billion cards in use today, issued by 22,000 different banks, and MasterCard is accepted at 33 million locations around the world, said David Butler, MasterCard's vice president and open API product manager.

The PaidPiper system is ready to become more streamlined for in-store use when NFC (near-field computing) becomes more widely available in phones and point-of-sale systems, Hussein said.

 

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