UK: Mobile operator, O2 has announced the launch of O2 Wallet – a service it says will deliver the benefits of mobile money to more UK consumers than any other product or service currently available.
Eden Zoller, principal analyst at Ovum and author of upcoming report; Mapping Mobile Payments, April 2012, has the following comment:
“The O2 mobile wallet service is one of the most comprehensive of its kind to be launched by a European mobile operator. It features money transfers, price comparisons, offers and promotions, the ability to link existing Visa and MasterCard credit/debit cards to the O2 Wallet account along with prepaid options. However, a notable omission is the lack of support for NFC, making the service essentially a mobile web and online proposition, although O2 is looking to introduce NFC in the future.
“O2 Mobile Wallet is a flagship, feature packed service that has clearly been designed to face the increasing threat of mobile payment services from OTT players such as Google Wallet and PayPal, and of course other operators. It is promising consumers an awful lot and all eyes will be on the service, which will need to deliver air-tight security and a seamless user experience across the multiple applications contained in the wallet.
“There could also be challenges going forward in terms of positioning O2 Wallet alongside the collaborative mobile payments service that O2 is planning with Vodafone and Everything Everywhere in the UK, although this venture is currently being investigated by the EC on potential anti-trust grounds.”