Isis, the mobile-payment joint venture backed by AT&T Inc., Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile USA Inc., began service today in Salt Lake City and Austin, Texas, after strategy-related delays.
The application is available through Google Play store and requires an American Express, Capital One, Chase credit card or Isis cash card to activate the Isis Mobile Wallet, the companies said today in a statement. Customers will need Isis enabled smartphones that include a secure SIM card and near-field communication technology, or NFC.
Isis, which will let users pay for items at stores using their mobile phones, had previously planned to roll out the service in the first half of 2012. The joint venture tweaked its strategy last year, opting to use credit-card companies to handle transactions rather than the carriers themselves, and it’s taken time to ensure that payments can be made securely.
Carriers are planning to use Isis to capture some of the transaction fees from user purchases. The push is part of an effort to find new sources of revenue through data services. Sprint Nextel Corp., the only major carrier left out of the Isis partnership, uses Google Wallet as one of its mobile pay services.