Mobile payments: power to the plastic!

Another day, another flashy mobile payment startup, this time Clinkle, a new venture started by a 22-year old Stanford grad who just got $25 million from a bunch of familiar Silicon Valley names.

Will this one succeed where others have failed?

As the above article makes extremely clear, there’s one big problem facing any mobile payment solution. You need to show consumers that your solution is easier and more beneficial than using their little plastic cards. I haven’t seen anything yet that can compete.

As we learned in our Mobile Monday DC session on mobile payment last year, the real goal of financial institutions and other companies who talk about “disrupting” payment is to find a way to “monetize” the payment activity through advertising, coupons, and special offers. It’s not really about making life easier for the consumer.

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