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Best Buy, Walmart Team to Form Google Wallet Competitor

By - Source: Merchant Customer Exchange (pdf) | B 13 comments

A large number of retailers have grouped together to create their own mobile payment system.

With the launch of the Asus Nexus 7, Google finally added an additional weapon to its currently slim list of Google Wallet-compatible pickings. The list is seemingly slim because the cost of NFC technology has become reasonable to the point that manufacturers are just now beginning to integrate the tech into their designs. With Google's alliance with MasterCard slowly gaining traction, it's not hard to believe that other "retailers" now want a piece of the mobile payment pie before Google overtakes the market.

That's where the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) comes in. Announced on Wednesday (pdf), it's a mobile payments network jointly developed by more than a dozen big merchants including Walmart, Best Buy Target, 7-Eleven, Sunoco and more. They too want users whipping out their smartphones to make purchases rather than the less-secure plastic customers have relied upon for decades. But apparently don't want them doing it through Google's Android-based solution.

According to the announcement, development of the mobile application is underway, with an initial focus on a flexible solution that will offer merchants a customizable platform with the features and functionality needed to best meet consumers' needs. Even more, the payment application will be available through virtually any smartphone.

Mike Cook, corporate vice president and assistant treasurer, Walmart, told the Wall Street Journal that the MCX collaboration is open to all partners, but it has to be beneficial to member merchants in a way that improves the system and doesn't layer on additional costs.

"MCX will leverage mobile technology to give consumers a faster and more convenient shopping experience while eliminating unnecessary costs for all stakeholders," Cook said in the official announcement.. "The MCX platform will employ secure technology to deliver an efficiency-enhancing mobile solution available to all merchant categories, including retail stores, casual dining, petroleum and e-commerce."

"We believe MCX is uniquely qualified to offer the most comprehensive mobile payment options for consumers," said Terry Scully, president of financial and retail services, Target. "By participating in MCX, merchants are in a position to effectively deliver innovative payment approaches that aren’t available today."

However consumers are reportedly expressing "discomfort" with loading their personal financial information onto their phone. Google has previously countered this fear by pointing out that it's more secure than storing a credit card in a wallet or purse. The gadget can be locked, Google argues, and the Google Wallet app itself is even secured with a PIN. Presumably MCX will offer the same security measures.

"As merchants, no one understands our customers’ shopping and payment experience better than we do, and we’re confident that together we can develop a technology solution that makes that experience more engaging, convenient and efficient," said Mark Williams, president of financial services, Best Buy.

MCX will be announcing additional merchants, as well as more details regarding its product offering and partners, in the weeks and months ahead.

 

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  • 3 Hide
    aqualipt , August 15, 2012 11:36 PM
    Meeeh, Google wallet FTW!
  • 5 Hide
    A Bad Day , August 15, 2012 11:39 PM
    I see a format war brewing. Anyone remember the HD DVD vs Blu-ray war?
  • 8 Hide
    alidan , August 16, 2012 12:09 AM
    A Bad DayI see a format war brewing. Anyone remember the HD DVD vs Blu-ray war?


    blu ray won because of the ps3, even though some hddvds are higher quality than bluray, the thing being an example.

    but this, screw Best Buy and Walmart, neither of them are good, and i would rather deal with google than walk into their stores if i have any other alternatives.
  • Display all 13 comments.
  • 3 Hide
    frankpakdmys , August 16, 2012 12:22 AM
    This is just not needed...
  • 7 Hide
    sacre , August 16, 2012 1:15 AM
    Right. Let me guess, those with the Google wallet will go there looking to purchase something and Walmart will say "Sorry, we do not accept that - BUT - you can get this, its the same thing! FOR A SMALL FEE"

    I'll just stick with plastic. I'm already paying monthly fees for my bank, I don't feel like paying more for some app that does the same thing.
  • 0 Hide
    PTNLemay , August 16, 2012 2:31 AM
    I don't understand, if not Google's Android then what, iPhones? While I will acknowledge their popularity means they have numbers to back them up, all they have is bluetooth, GPS, 3.5G, and WiFi. Do they expect to build this thing off WiFi? Because that seems like a powderkeg solution to me (range is too big, gives hackers more room to work with).
  • 2 Hide
    LordConrad , August 16, 2012 2:51 AM
    A Bad DayI see a format war brewing. Anyone remember the HD DVD vs Blu-ray war?

    What about VHS vs Betamax? Wait, did I just show my age? Umm... never mind.
  • 0 Hide
    CaedenV , August 16, 2012 2:56 AM
    PTNLemayI don't understand, if not Google's Android then what, iPhones? While I will acknowledge their popularity means they have numbers to back them up, all they have is bluetooth, GPS, 3.5G, and WiFi. Do they expect to build this thing off WiFi? Because that seems like a powderkeg solution to me (range is too big, gives hackers more room to work with).

    It will be NFC (near field communications) which will soon be found in most google, windows, and possibly future iPhones. It is a neat local tech good for passing allong small bits of information, but I am more interested in it as a way to do secure file sharing than a wallet. While tech like this seems interesting (I would be less likely to make purchases when seeing my balance on my phone than just pulling out the blank plastic), I simply do not trust phone tech yet for such data.
  • 1 Hide
    supall , August 16, 2012 3:16 AM
    Great... so we have one from the Cellphone ISPs...we have one for banks, we have one from Google, and we now have one from Best Buy and Walmart... This is stupid.
  • 1 Hide
    mharry860 , August 16, 2012 4:06 AM
    Good luck with that. I'll bet it will mysteriously not work on Android and iOS phones.
  • 2 Hide
    s3anister , August 16, 2012 6:33 AM
    Quote:
    Best Buy, Walmart Team to Form Google Wallet Competitor


    Do not want.
  • 2 Hide
    freggo , August 16, 2012 10:27 AM
    LordConradWhat about VHS vs Betamax? Wait, did I just show my age? Umm... never mind.


    Talking about age, How about AC vs DC :bounce: 
  • 0 Hide
    eddieroolz , August 17, 2012 12:00 AM
    While I don't like Google nor its privacy issue-ridden Wallet, I don't like having multiple "standards" fencing in its share of the market.

    What we really need is a global standard, not set by a single corporation, that's secure and compliant with the strictest privacy laws.