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U.S. Bank drives mobile payments strategy with Square integration

July 22, 2013

U.S. Bank is integrating with the Square Wallet mobile app

In a move to drive its mobile payments strategy, U.S. Bank is integrating with the Square digital wallet, enabling users to fund payments made via the mobile application from their bank account.

U.S. Bank is working with several different digital wallet providers, including Visa’s, to ensure its customers have choices when it comes to making payments via their smartphones. For the Square integration, customers can link their U.S. Bank credit, debit or prepaid account to the Square app to make payments from an iPhone or Android phone.

“Square offers many consumers the convenience of the Square Wallet and the ability to pay with that wallet,” said Dominic Venturo, chief innovation officer of payment services at U.S. Bank, Minneapolis.

“We see that portion of their offerings as complementary to our payments business and desire to enable our customers to pay where, when and how they would like to with our products,” he said. “This is also why we have worked with Visa to enable our cardholders to utilize from Visa, a digital wallet offering.”

Enhancing payments
U.S. Bank customers can choose to register with one or more wallets that the bank offers and shop at any store that displays a wallet’s logo.

Square wallet can be used at merchant locations that sell with the Square mobile attachment for processing card payments.

Using the Square wallet, customers can discover nearby businesses and pay at the point of sale with their mobile device by simply saying their name, meaning transactions are completed without the cashier having the customer’s account number or other sensitive data.

The U.S. Bank iPhone app

Square’s technology automatically manages the transaction from the customer’s U.S. Bank payment account to the merchant.

Choice is key
U.S. Bank has been very proactive in the mobile space, including apps for a variety of devices.

Earlier this year, the bank launched a program enabling customers with a U.S. Bank FlexPerks Visa account to opt-in for a payments program that includes a customized U.S. Bank Go Mobile iPhone case equipped with NFC technology for tap-and-go payments (see story).

Last spring, U.S. Bank piloted a new augmented reality app enabling users to easily find and access information about the closest U.S. Bank branch or ATM (see story).

“At this point, it is early in the game, and digital wallets are an emerging product and service,” Mr. Venturo said.“We believe they are an important part of the future of payments and are seeing customers adopt and then use the wallets we have made available.

“While we are not able to release any specific metrics due to the proprietary nature of that information, I can tell you that the largest learning for us is that we have to be open to working with many different parties to enable our customers to do business in the manner they choose,” he said.

Final Take
Chantal Tode is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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