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Telefónica Deutschland, the German brand of international wireless carrier Telefónica, will be launching a new digital wallet and a smartphone-to-smartphone direct money transfer service, the company announced today.
"Soon, children will only know from history books what a wallet and hard cash are," said René Schuster, CEO of Telefónica Germany, a subsidiary of Telefónica Deutschland. "Mobile payment with your smartphone has arrived in Germany. Our customers will soon be transferring money mobile-to-mobile and paying in shops using their digital wallet."
The new mpass peer-to-peer service will be the first such service in Germany through a wireless carrier. It will launch in February.
With mpass, users will be able to transfer money between mpass accounts in near real time using only a mobile phone number. The process is both simple to use and free of charge, the company said.
The mpass app will be available to both Android and iOS users and will require a one-time registration to use the service.
In addition to the P2P service, Telefónica Deutschland will also be offering the O2 Wallet. It's a digital wallet using NFC for contactless payments at the point of sale. The O2 Wallet is currently in trials but will also be launching in February. The mobile wallet will use MasterCard's PayPass technology to securely pass payment credentials from NFC-enabled smartphones with an NFC SIM card installed.
A free NFC pack, including the NFC SIM card, will be sent to users through Telefónica Deutschland. The users will then be able to download the app and link their payment cards to the wallet. At the moment, since it only works on NFC-enabled phones, the app will only be available for Android devices.
Telefónica Deutschland additional functionality for the digital wallet will be rolled out over the next year. Additonally, the first banking partner will be announced that will offer the integration of a digital credit card.
For more stories like this, visit the mobile/digital wallet research center.