American Express teams with Verizon on digital wallet

American Express (AmEx) is linking with Verizon Wireless to power its mobile payments service, Serve, as the credit card provider continues its push into the digital space. The deal enables users to transfer money to each other via smartphones using accounts provided by AmEx. Serve is the latest example of mobile operators teaming up with traditional finance firms as they attempt to push their digital wallet facilities to market and kickstart the adoption of mobile payments. The service, unveiled by AmEx in March, will come pre-loaded on Verizon smartphones and tablets later this year.

Serve is Verizon’s second foray into mobile payments, alongside Isis, its joint venture with fellow operators AT&T and T-Mobile. The trio recently teamed with Visa, MasterCard, AmEx and Discover as they ready the platform. It was originally thought that Isis was the operators’ attempt at serving mobile payments without the involvement of credit card companies, but as the space becomes more crowded, operators are taking less chances with their offerings. The launch of Serve comes after a similar agreement between Google and Sprint Nextel for the firm’s Google Wallet service, available on its Android OS, while O2 recently turned to Visafor its mobile wallet project in the UK, set to launch during Q3.

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