A huge win for .ME – Visa launched the beta version of V.me today. The site will be a digital wallet service poised to rival Paypal. From E-Consultancy:
Visa has anounced that its digital wallet service will be called V.me, but won’t use the credit card’s traditional branding.
Expected to be rolled out fully in early 2012 after launching in beta today, V.me will have its own identity in an effort to differentiate it from Visa’s other services.
The service will work in a similar way to PayPal, as an ecommerce offering initially, and can be topped up through a variety of sources including Visa, Mastercard or a standard bank account.
This means users will be able to make an online payment using a username and password, rather than having to key in all of the data from a credit card.
To accelerate the adoption of Visa’s payments services, including V.me, the company has also unveiled a new developer programme that brings together all its current subsidiaries including Authorize.Net, CyberSource, Fundamo and PlaySpan. Its aim is to give retailers, merchants and start-ups better access to Visa’s payments services, since the tools provide mobile developers with easier ways to accept payments on handsets.
Considering Visa’s strength as a reputable name in the banking sector, supported by heavy marketing and advertising of the new product, V.me is in a good position. Existing customers should be able to sign up easily, and new ones will feel secure due to the association with Visa.
With PayPal’s own digital wallet service expected to launch next year – as well as Google Wallet on the market- it’ll be interesting to see how products from the big three compare.