Coles to launch MasterCard mobile wallet.

Article by Kevin Boyle

Coles is joining up with credit card powerhouse MasterCard to deliver the latest contactless mobile device payment system.

The supermarket giant has teamed up with GE Capital Australia, Vodafone, Gemalto and MasterCard for a 3 month trial of the new mobile application. If successful the app is expected to be available for public use within 12 months. The virtual payment system removes the need for shoppers to carry a plastic credit card, is usable at Coles stores and in over 700,000 merchants world wide, has all the security features of a regular MasterCard and earns users Coles Flybuys points.

"This new trial will assess the user friendliness of the technology, it's capacity to increase the speed of transaction, save customers time in store and seamless integration of Flybuys points to add even more value to the Coles customer experience," says Coles General Manager of Financial Services, Richard Wormald. 

Many are claiming that 2013 will be the year that the need for a plastic credit card will disappear altogether, with over 2.125 million NFC enabled smart phones expected to be in use within Australia by the end of the first quarter of the year, according to NFC marketing agency, Tapit. And with the mainstream supermarket giant now stepping into the ring, NFC payments are sure to experience major growth.

Although 'digital wallets' will remove the need for shoppers to carry a plastic credit card, the technology will not remove the need to compare credit cards for the lowest interest rates and best rewards.

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