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Discover’s Pulse offers new payment channel to consumers via mPOS

Discover’s ATM network Pulse is launching a QR-based  mobile wallet to improve payment efficiency and enhance transaction experiences for consumers.

Pulse is partnering with Paydiant to provide its mobile wallet platform, which is available on iPhone and Android devices. The platform can be integrated with point-of-sale terminals used by participating merchants without them having to buy new hardware.

“As smartphones become an increasingly important aspect of our lives, consumers are making mobile part of how they interact and transact,” said Douglas Hartung, emerging products manager and head of mobile services at Pulse, San Diego.

“Pulse has a strong history of payments innovation, and we will continue to support our participants as new payments form factors continue to emerge, including payments from smart phones and tablets.”

Pulse, a Discover Financial Services company, serves around 6,100 financial institutions across the United States.

Mobile wallets
Pulse’s new mobile wallet is meant to improve payment efficiency and enhance transaction experience for consumers at retailers and ATMs that accept Paydiant wallets.

To achieve that goal, Paydiant uses a platform that can be quickly deployed on any payment terminator POS by a financial institution, retailer or third-party service provider.

The Pulse mobile wallet will also let retailers provide point-of-sale offers and withdraw cash from an ATM.

The Paydiant mobile wallet application works through a secure system that does not store any sensitive account information on the mobile device itself. Every transaction requires a two-factor authentication and tokenization.

In order to pay or take out cash at an ATM, consumers simply capture a QR code with the camera on their smartphone.

Pulse’s mobile wallet to use at merchants

Pulse branding
According to Mr. Hartung, the Paydiant platform was appealing for Pulse because it lets financial institutions and merchants deploy branded wallets that can be used at participating merchants regardless of which company deployed the wallet.

The platform was also attractive because it uses one technology, QR codes, to support a wide range of uses.

Additionally, consumers do not have to upgrade their phones and merchants do not have to buy new POS hardware in order to use the system.

“Financial institutions will be able to start learning about how their cardholders are looking to interact and pay from their phone sooner than if they were dependent on hardware-based solutions, and at a lower cost,” Mr. Hartung said.

“This approach also enables them to embed payments functionality into their existing mobile banking environment, thus driving increased usage and usefulness,” he said. “At the same time, merchants will be able to embed payment functionality into their existing mobile commerce applications.

“For both financial institutions and merchants, there is a significant opportunity to create value for their customers through these mobile applications, and begin to capture new value streams.”

Final Take
Rebecca Borison is editorial assistant on Mobile Marketer, New York