Rogers to Become Part of the Digital Wallet

By: Gary Parkinson on September 19, 2012

One of the biggest names in Canada these days is Rogers with the company’s name and reputation known across the country as Canada’s leading mobile phone service provider. They have also become one of the largest media companies in the industry and owners of some iconic Canadian landmarks such as the Rogers Centre in Toronto, home of the Toronto Blue Jays; or the Rogers Arena in Vancouver, home of the Vancouver Canucks. They seem to be moving all over the country and now they have plans to move into your wallet.

Rogers CEO Nadir Mohamed says they are making plans to become a part of the ‘digital wallet’movement through mobile payments on smartphones. He says that in five years it will be common in Canada and across the world for smartphones to be the common form of credit card payment and that Rogers wants in on the grassroots. They have already partnered with CIBC and plan to launch Canada’s first mobile payments system later this year; however, they are still waiting on approval from the federal Finance Department for a license to offer financial products to Canadians.

Mohamed says it is a natural transition for the company and the smartphone industry as a whole, saying that a smartphone is already a phone, a camera, and a computer; “tomorrow it will be your virtual wallet.” He also claims that some Canadians carry up to 22 credit cards and are looking to get rid of that extra plastic with one convenient method of managing credit accounts.

The digital wallet will use the SIM card inside Near Field Communication (NFC) devices to safely manage all financial and personal information that can be stored within these devices. According to industry news, newer Blackberry models and some Androids are capable of making mobile payments; interestingly enough however, the new iPhone 5 will not have the NFC technology to be able to link to credit card information. It remains to be seen how Rogers and others will plan to link the digital wallet with the new iPhone but it definitely serves as a challenge to bring Apple products into the new movement.

Rogers now has over 800,000 smartphones connected to its network and approximately million in annual revenue from these devices. With 9.4 million subscribers to the Rogers name as a whole, Mohamed believes giving their customers this payment option will not only satisfy their goal of expanding quality service but possibly serve as a reach to gather more customers.