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Your Cell Phone Instead of a Credit Card

Boot Camp feature for Wednesday, May 3, 2006

Your cell phone instead of a credit card. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. The technology is already being tested in Japan. Chips embedded in cell phones that contain your account information….allow consumers to simply hold their phones up to a reader to pay for merchandise. While we wait for that to arrive here, PayPal…the online payment company owned by EBay, has announced what it calls PayPal Mobile. Senior VP Dana Stalder…

"What we're doing is we are allowing our more than hundred million PayPal account holders today to mobilely enable their PayPal account. And the way that works is you would simply take your mobile phone number and attach it to your PayPal account. It's a less than 60 second process and what we're doing is we're attaching first your mobile phone number to your PayPal account. And then we're allowing you to create a four digit PIN that's associated with mobile payments for that account."

Users can then send payments person to person, or use a service that's called Text to Buy…

"PayPal has essentially created a catalog of retail products. And each of those retail products will have a code associated with it, a six digit code. So if I'm flipping through a magazine and I see an advertisement for the newly released Walk the Line DVD by Fox and I want to buy that. Well you know what, I can just, sitting there on the couch or the lobby at the airport, pull out my mobile phone and text the word cash1 to PayPal."

The merchandise selection is very limited …at least for now. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.