Mobile devices will not replace existing point-of-sale acceptance systems in the U.S. anytime soon, Jim McCarthy, head of North American financial institution sales for Visa Inc., told attendees yesterday at SourceMedia's 21st Annual Card Forum & Expo in Marco Island, Fla. "In this marketplace, given the network effect of the infrastructure we've got ... point of sale will be the last place to change." Elsewhere in the world, McCarthy suggested mobile devices will see wider usage for payments. "It depends on the marketplace, but there are places around the globe where mobile will [sooner] be the primary acceptance device," but he offered no timeline and did not name specific markets that will adopt mobile payments first. Instead, mobile in the U.S. will be "informational, not transactional" in the foreseeable future, McCarthy said. He suggested that issuers should arm consumers with financial literacy tools in order to help build trust and transparency. "From the technology perspective we believe mobile will be the key [delivery mechanism] to all of this," he said. Joshua Peirez, group executive, innovative platforms, for MasterCard Worldwide, told CardLine that mobile payment technology in the U.S. is advancing, but he also declined to provide a timeline for when the mobile channel will supplant existing point-of-sale infrastructure here or abroad. "Consumers will use mobile devices to pay for a lot of things over the next 10 years—especially online purchases—but in the U.S. we'll continue to see many [point-of-sale] options," he said.

Subscribe Now

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the payments industry

14-Day Free Trial

Authoritative analysis and perspective for every segment of the industry