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When will we pay attention to Amazon in the mobile payment space?

  • By Timothy Roberts
  • Wednesday, April 27, 2011

In all the speculation of Apple sweeping the mobile payment system by virtue of adding the letter “i” in front of the word pay, in all the promises of Silicon Valley start-ups exploiting social networks, and all the existing networks working on pilots and trials around the world, is there an 800lb gorilla in the room marked mobile payment?

When is Amazon going to get involved?

They’ve got just as many of the building blocks as some of the other potential players – there’s a relationship at both ends of the payment chain (with both customers and suppliers), they’ve a broad international structure, and they are a trusted name to “man in the street”. That’s potentially a huge advantage over trendy new companies like Square and Stripe.

And it wouldn’t be the first time that Amazon has quietly moved into a space proven by others. Their MP3 Music store is one of the more successful competitors to iTunes, and they recently launched their own application store for Android powered smartphones.

Mobile payment seems to be a natural space for Amazon to expand into. They already provide an online service for websites to use the Amazon checkout process; and have the ability to send money to people in a similar fashion to Paypal – once smartphones with NFC capability become widely available over the next twelve months over the major platforms, Amazon will have the mobile platform to take these services out into the physical world.