Incumbents and Big Banks Announce Support for Suretap Mobile Wallet

by Istvan Fekete on June 23, 2015

Ahead of the Canadian launch of Apple Pay, major telecom players and big banks have teamed up to push a local mobile wallet initiative, reports the Globe and Mail. Rogers launched its mobile wallet, Suretap (now a separate entity, Suretap Wallet LP), last year and now Telus, Bell Koodo, and Virgin have announced they are backing this initiative alongside the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.

“We have additional national banks lined up that we are working with, and I anticipate some time through late summer and into December, we’ll be rolling these out,” said Jeppe Dorff, president of Suretap.

While Canadian banks have their own version of payment apps, by supporting Suretap, CIBC says it gives consumers the option of using another app in addition to its own solution.

When presenting Apple Pay, the company pointed to the fragmented mobile wallet market. That’s exactly what is happening in Canada, as well. However, it seems that’s about to change: Local players are joining forces to provide a viable option to consumers – everything they need in one place. As with Apple Pay, starting in iOS 9 users can have all their cards – credit/debit cards, loyalty cards, etc. – in an app rebranded to Wallet (currently Passbook).

Suretap provides a similar option to customers owning an Android smartphone: It will soon include debit cards, gift cards, loyalty cards, and digital coupons, and arrives in advance of Apple rolling out its Apple Pay mobile payment system in Canada.

“For mobile payments to take off in the way that everyone has wanted, it’s very important that there is a single wallet, with all the content available to all Canadians,” Suretap’s Mr. Dorff said. “Having a unified, single place to store all your credentials is quite unique,” he said. “We are certainly going to beat Apple.”

While the mobile payment market is yet to take off, the stakes are high: US digital payments are predicted to reach $142 billion by 2019, almost three times more than the $52 billion last year, according to Forrester Research.

Canadians and retailers are apparently ready: Smartphone adoption currently stands at 76% and is predicted to reach 80% by the end of 2015. As for retailers, about 35% have contactless payment terminals, which compares to 2% in the US.

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Written by: Istvan Fekete. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube.

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