PayPal can already be used in about 2,000 Home Depot stores. And you probably use a VeriFone machine at least once a day when you shop in stores and pay for your purchases by card--the company is one of the world's top payment technology makers, and says that its customer base includes 80% of the top 200 largest retailers in the U.S. The new partnership brings a simple software ugrade to Verifone terminals by the retailers in question--but it's a big leap for PayPal and potentially for the average consumer.
The Way We Shop Now
VeriFone and PayPal's new venture joins several other recent payment industry innovations
Everyone from MasterCard to Amex, to startups like Square and Fab.com are angling for a piece of the action. Read more here.
At first PayPal's digital wallet tech will be selectively rolled out alongside existing card infrastructure with carefully chosen merchants. (PayPal has not yet revealed who these retailers will be.) Then VeriFone will build PayPal's system natively into its list of offers to merchants--soon enough you'll start to see PayPal's logo popping up on more and more window stickers just like Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, and so on.
The upshot is that you'll be able to use PayPal's novel in-store payment tricks like using its Access card and a PIN or simply tapping in your pre-arranged phone number and a PIN instead of waving your choice of credit card at the retailer and swiping it through their card-reader.
The move is significant because it's a signal that PayPal is more determined than ever to capture some of the burgeoning mobile payments market, and a long list of nationwide retailers is a great way to build marketshare as well as build customer awareness of these alternative payment systems. In making the announcement, the two firms note that adding support for NFC technology or other hardware solutions is easy. That means Verifone, which is already positioning itself to address markets similar to those Square does with its iPhone card reader system, is getting ready to embrace all sorts of different mobile-pay solutions, from PayPal to Google Wallet and even the fabled iWallet.
The end of the traditional credit card looms a little closer, ever day.