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Mobile wallet – good thing or not? – Should I use mobile wallet?

%image_alt%The mobile wallet is one of the latest trend in our ever-changing IT support industry.  We all have iPhones, Androids, or other smartphones so it’s easy to do banking on your phone.  What about using mobile wallet?  First, let’s discuss what exactly it is.  It means you can pay for stuff on your phone.  You are already probably doing this with Amazon, Apple, Gap, Costco, and buying Apps.

Here’s how the mobile wallet works.  You first create a digital wallet with Mastercard, Visa, Google, Square wallet or other providers.  Then, activate your mobile wallet by going to the provider’s mobile wallet app.  Finally, you’re ready to go and can check out with any merchant that has a near-field communication (NFC) reader or other methods available at checkout.

Keep in mind that iPhones do not have NFC readers so you can either use other mobile wallet methods that the store uses or buy an NFC adapter, i.e. iCarte.

Back to the matter at hand.  Should use use mobile wallet?  If you’re paranoid about people hacking into your account, it’s NOT for you.  You have more of a chance of a security flaw and someone accessing your mobile wallet than if you paid with your credit card.  There are just more points of entry, such as wireless hacking and you have a couple more vendors involved in your credit card transaction.  If you’re the type who likes to leave your wallet at home (you can leave your credit cards at home for this), then, go free Willy and swipe your virtual credit card!

Overall, I think you should wait.  Not all technology service vendors have bought into the concept yet.  Actually, there are over 70% who have not made the jump.  You should wait until there is more market saturation with the mobile wallet which will lead to cheaper transaction costs, better security, and a more stable system.

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