Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Mobile payments: the money is stuck in my phone

I worked with a fellow who balked at creating a gmail account because he didn't want too many passwords out there (here's the post).

"It puts my bank account in danger," he explained.

My guess is, he still uses his cell to make phone calls.

My other guess is that the rest of us use our cell phones to check our gmail, listen to music, google the earth, check on our blogs, our twitter, our foursquare, our LinkedIn, our fitness plan, our stock prices, jot notes to ourselves, and record a voice message.

I shudder to think what my former co-worker will do when he discovers he will be making payments via his mobile phone.

According to a post on the Reflections of a Newsosaur, phones will replace currency and credit cards.

"It’s not a matter of if, but when," says Alan D. Mutter.

"The check's on the phone," we'll promise creditors.

During their follow up contact we'll swear, "We got disconnected before I could complete the transaction!"

If you lose your phone, as I did recently, and thank you Stephen King for it's safe return, you'll be making payments with what? Cash? The importance of the receipt will rise and bury us in unneeded slips of paper. We'll have to prove we paid that bill in cash with another piece of paper. Or, a scan of a piece of paper.

We will no longer have credit reports, we'll have phone numbers that denote our status of good payers. It will morph to our 'phone-it-in' score. A good score will make our KLOUT rise along with our perks of unnecessary offers.

We'll be drowning in credit-connectness, personal QR codes based on our ability to pay, finance, float or dodge. Our phones will act as personal transponders that open doors, gates and bridges.

Waving our phone at someone will be an honor of respect and will probably leech a few dollars out if we shake it too hard.

Google will be our new bank.

And you thought gmail would always be free.