Mobile payments joint-venture Isis is taking the slow road to mobile wallet adoption, rather than going full steam ahead like rival Google Wallet, reports GigaOM.
Isis will be nearly a year behind Google Wallet when it finally comes to market this summer in Salt Lake City and Austin. However, in light of Google Wallet’s recent struggles, staying behind may reward Isis in the long run.
While Google Wallet stumbled with a PIN hack scare and a drought of compatible handsets, Isis opted to hold back and amass a powerful list of partners, all while hammering out an open, neutral system designed to appease every partnering bank, merchant, credit card company and carrier, according to GigaOM.
To date, these partners include credit card companies Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover, as well as six major handset makers, payment terminal makers Ingenico and VeriFone, and financial institutions Chase, Capitol One and BarclayCard. According to GigaOM, this gives Isis access to over 50% of consumers in the U.S.
By contrast, Google Wallet only has one banking partner, Citibank, and one mobile operator partner in Sprint.
Still, with all this leverage, Isis is remaining cautious.
“We’re not trying to hit a home run, but get a bunt single,” explained Isis chief marketing officer Ryan Hughes.
According to Hughes, getting on base would require delivering a mobile wallet this summer that contains as many familiar cards and merchant brand names as possible.
“We think it serves us well to not be out there now,” commented Hughes.
In the run up to this summer’s launch, Isis is also working on a digital coupon clipping feature that would enable users to select coupons found online and transmit them to the Isis app on their mobile phone.
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