MasterPass puts the power of convenience right in the palm of your hand by turning your smartphone into a digital wallet. All it takes to get started is downloading one simple app. While shopping, simply scan the barcode on your items with your phone, then place them into your shopping cart. When you're ready to check out just tap the "BUY WITH MasterPass" button right there on your touchscreen, and you're done. Say goodbye to long lines forever. "Every device is becoming a shopping device," says Ed McLaughlin, chief emerging payments officer at MasterCard. "MasterPass brings together all of the ways we pay for things, from traditional plastic cards to digital wallets, and gives consumers the ability to make a payment from wherever they are and with one simple experience." While this is all great news for the consumer, what does it mean for merchants? For brick-and-mortar retailers, it means a faster, more pleasant shopping experience for their customers and a way to compete for convenience with online merchants. Once shoppers find out a store has no long checkout lines, at least not for them, they'll be beating down the doors to get in--at least that's the theory. "The convergence of the physical and digital worlds is increasingly offering more payment and commercial options along with increased consumer choice and greater convenience," says Hany Fam, president of strategic alliances at MasterCard Europe.
The new service also has its online shopping advantages, too. For e-commerce vendors it means a faster, more secure experience for the customer. Since the customer's information is already stored at MasterCard, all it takes is the touch of a button. MasterPass works from any smartphone or tablet, even that clunky old computer. "We want to let consumers choose their own device, and we've built the platform to enable that," says Ed Olebe, SVP & group head at MasterCard Worldwide.
MasterPass supports technologies like NFC, Near Field Communication, and QR, Quick Response. NFC mobile transactions are already a booming industry and are expected to reach $74 billion globally by the year 2015. 85% of all terminals are expected to take non-cash payments by 2016, according to Jupiter Research. For Q4 2012, MasterCard says it beat Wall Street estimates, reporting a net income increase of 18% to $605 million, or $4.86 per diluted share, up from $514 million, or $4.03, the year prior. Average estimates came in at around $4.80. For the Q1 2013, ending April 30, analysts estimate earnings of $6.18 per share. Annual estimates are $25.42 for 2013 and $30.21 for 2014, this as MasterCard continues its expansion into international markets with its digital wallet foray.