Paypal promoting use from Mobiles

Not many people remember that X.com turned into PayPal. Until recently you could actually log in to x.com on your mobile and log in to paypal.

Back last year, Bango started working with PayPal to enable mobile internet sites to use PayPal for micropayments. The collaboration is working very well. See http://www.bango.com/investor/paypal_120905.pdf for more info. Users can navigate round WAP sites and make one click payments, because Bango is tightly integrated with Paypal’s systems. Nevertheless, connecting a PayPal account with a mobile phone to enable this process requires (at least once) a user to go to a PC.

From this week, PayPal have started educating users about mobile from the PC end. Paypal mobile! uses a mobile phone as an extension of the PC to instruct payments to be sent to paypal merchants or other users. Once a phone is connected to a paypal account, the authentication of the payment is done by IVR (basically Paypal initiates a voice call to the user).

This is great news. Using a text message or a voice call to transfer money to people or merchants is a huge step forward from requiring a "logged in PC" and will open up PayPal to a much wider audience.

While the new system is more complex for mobile internet sites, where the existing PayPal/Bango system works very well, the new system has application where the user is not on the mobile internet when they make a buying decision. Bango will be able to leverage both the text driven and the voice driven stuff to enable users to pay or pre-pay money to mobile content providers before the user visits their site to collect the content.

With thousands of content providers using Bango to get to market, Bango is obviously very keen to exploit – on their behalf – any new payment methods that achieve mass market traction. Lets hope Paypal by text and voice is one such method.

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