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Stanford University, Palo Alto businesses tap PayPal program for mobile purchases

September 28, 2010

blingStanford University and the Palo Alto community are using their mobile devices as digital wallets as part of a new tap-and-pay PayPal service.

The community and university are working with Bling Nation, using its tap-and-pay PayPal program. Palo Alto businesses have already signed up with Bling Nation during a introductory program with PayPal in August.

Bling Nation mobile payment services connect local financial institutions and businesses, letting customers use their mobile phones to tap-and-pay for purchases and receive text account balance and transaction confirmations at the point of sale.

Mobile bling
Consumers with a PayPal account can sign up for a BlingTag, which is a quarter-sized microchip sticker that adheres to the back of their mobile device, enabling transactions at the point-of-sale.

According to the company, there are more than 6,000 active BlingTags being used in Palo Alto.

Several merchants on the Stanford University campus, such as Coupa Café, CoHo Café, Fraiche Yogurt, Jimmy V’s, Rays and The Treehouse are using Bling Nation.

To get the word out about the campaign the university is running various promotions and marketing events, including visibility through street teams, partnerships with student organizations and sponsorships of sporting events.

Local Palo Alto businesses are also working with the company to help build awareness of the tap-and-pay system.

Throughout this month, merchants will host two-hour events at their stores.

Local businesses will distribute BlingTags, link to PayPal accounts and offer prizes and incentives for consumers.

Final Take
Rimma Kats, editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach her at

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