Store your wallet in your phone

Store your wallet in your phone

Smartphones are becoming more integrated with our lives every day. They've become suitable substitutes for landlines, cameras, and computers - and now your phone can double as your wallet, too.

Recently, a new mobile payment option joined the ranks of Google Wallet and PayPal Here. The Mobile Wallet is currently being test-marketed in Austin and Salt Lake City, with plans to expand nationwide through 2013.

A joint venture between AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile, allows people to carry out purchases and transactions with a single tap - eliminating the need to carry cash or cards.

How it works

The Mobile Wallet uses Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, enabling your phone to 'talk' to other devices through proximity. Customers simply wave their smart phones in front of enabled scanners to complete a transaction.

The app also allows merchants to offer on-the-spot discounts and loyalty perks to customers.

What it works with

Offering a wide range of payment options, with the ability to store payment data for several cards. The platform currently accepts all four major credit and debit card types - MasterCard, Visa, Discover, and American Express - as well as Chase, Capital One, and Barclaycard credit cards.

The app is compatible with several phone models from the Samsung, Droid, and LG lines. While current model compatibility is limited, the companies expect to bring more models into the lineup through the end of 2012 and into 2013.

Mobile payment options are designed to make our lives easier, and the Mobile Wallet intends to deliver this new technology into the hands of more smartphone users - which in turn should see more merchants getting on board. Now, if only smartphones could store our driver's licenses...