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First it was PayPal giving a "sneak peek" of its new offline mobile payment strategy, and now MasterCard has done its own surreptitious reveal. At an analyst event on Thursday in New York City, MasterCard gave several tech sites a glimpse of the new Google Wallet, its NFC partnership with Google, as well as its own non-NFC mobile payment platform.
According to both engadget and InfoWorld, nothing new was revealed about the Google Wallet that wasn't already shared at the product launch in May, i.e. the Google Wallet will initially work on the Google Nexus S phone made by Samsung on the Sprint Network with cards issued from Citi. The only potentially new information is that the Google Wallet application is "within weeks" of being available.
The more interesting part of the sneak peek event was a look at some of the internal mobile products from MasterCard Labs, mostly showing off MasterCard's QkR platform, a technology that InfoWorld says integrates motion, audio and touch within applications.
According to InfoWorld, one application demoed at the event allows consumers to download coupons after detecting audio signals embedded in television commercials.
InfoWorld also describes another application that isn't really mobile-payment related, but cool nonetheless. (It sounds like something out of Minority Report.) The application uses gesture-recognition technology from the Xbox Kinect to navigate through websites and make a purchase.
InfoWorld said that most of the applications aren't coming to market anytime soon, but MasterCard did say an official announcement of details related to the gesture-recognition technology may be coming soon.
(The engadget report has a couple of videos included of the Google Wallet and an application using the QkR platform.)
For more stories like this, please visit our Carriers/Card Schemes research center.
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