ISIS, the telecom-backed mobile wallet venture, takes another major leap forward with the addition of American Express credit cards and Serve, the card issuer’s own digital payments platform. The agreement may allow ISIS to achieve dominance and edge out the slew of mobile wallets on the market.
American Express consumer, small business and Serve cards will be accessible through the mobile wallet, which will allow cardmembers to make tap-to-pay purchases with near field communications (NFC) technology.
“Now our Cardmembers and merchants can benefit from the ease and convenience of a tap-and-go experience on a mobile phone and still enjoy the benefits, services and support of American Express,” said Josh Silverman, president of U.S. consumer services for American Express, in a press statement.
The joint mobile-venture by AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless already has the partnership of Chase, Capital One and Barclaycard and all four major payment-processing networks — Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover.
Furthermore, major mobile-device manufacturers, including HTC, LG, Motorola Mobility, RIM, Samsung Mobile and Sony Ericsson, have signed on to produce phones that comply with the mobile wallet’s NFC standards.
The addition of American Express cards contributes to the upcoming ISIS pilot that is scheduled to take place in Salt Lake City, Utah and Austin, Texas starting this summer.
Meanwhile, Google Wallet — arguably the top rival of ISIS — is facing low adoption. The tech giant has partnerships with Citi, Sprint and the big four payment-processing networks. For the first seven months after Google Wallet launched in September 2011, it was available only on a single smartphone. (Google Wallet is supported on three new smartphones.)
The ISIS approach — to lock in major partnerships before launch — may lead to a high adoption rate due to greater availability.