NEW YORK (
) -- While
is the first big tech company
. Loads of start-ups have been working for years to allow consumers to pay for goods with only their mobile phones. Here's a look at some of the most innovative companies in the mobile payments space.
co-founder Jack Dorsey, Square allows merchants to process payments with a smartphone app and a small plastic credit card reader that gets plugged into the headphone jack of an iPhone or Android device.
Earlier this week, the company announced two new products: an iPhone app that replaces cash registers called Square Registers and Card Case which allows customers to pay for goods with their smartphones. Card Case also lets users store digital receipts and browse menus from local cafes and restaurants.
Square said it has processed more than $1 billion in payments since its launch in 2009.
Boku works with dozens of merchants like
to let consumers pay for digital goods and services simply by entering their cell phone numbers. The charges then show up on the user's phone bill, rather than the credit card bill.
Boku is targeted primarily at social gamers who are paying for virtual goods like a sheep on
popular "Farmville" game.
Obopay lets users send money to bank accounts and debit cards using only their phones with the company's mobile app, text message or the mobile Web.
The company also has partnerships with big financial institutions like
Fidelity Information Services
Obopay's investors include
, which invested $70 million in the company in 2009.
--Written by Olivia Oran in New York.
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