Boku launches mobile payment system for operators

Boku Accounts

Mobile payments firm Boku is making a move into the physical world, launching an offering for mobile operators that will enable their customers to make in-store payments (view press release). The new service, dubbed Boku Accounts, enables operators to issue their subscribers with a mobile payment account that can be linked to a pre-paid MasterCard credit card, NFC sticker or NFC-enabled smartphone. This means users will be able to make payments in-store and online anywhere that accepts MasterCard or has NFC point-of-sale terminals. Operators will also be able to work with retailers to offer targeted deals and offers to customers, as well as loyalty programmes, via apps for iOS, Android and the web.  

Boku Accounts brings together the best parts of mobile payments and technology, leveraging NFC, smartphones and global payment networks for a better consumer experience, using the device in your pocket to improve every transaction you make, anywhere in the world,” says Boku president Ron Hirson.

Boku is just the latest firm to make a move into offline payments, as firms ranging from PayPal to Square to Google seek to take a slice of the more than 90% of transactions that occur in-store. However, the firm faces an uphill battle in getting operators to adopt its service, particularly in the US, where three of the four major operators are already working on Isis and Sprint has teamed up with Google Wallet. Boku says it is focusing on Europe initially before expanding its horizons to the US.

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