Mastercard and Verizon (Engadget’s parent company) say they plan to work together on “transformational” financial technologies. The companies told CNBC they hope their new partnership starts producing results by 2023. One of the main areas they plan to work on is contactless payments. Specifically, they want to push Mastercard’s Tap on Phone platform, which allows compatible mobile devices to double as point of sale terminals that can process NFC payments. Among other things the two plan to explore are technologies that will make it easier for businesses to add touchless payment systems to their stores.
Naturally, 5G will play a significant role in all the solutions Verizon and Mastercard have in mind. “5G will enable the small and medium business to handle transactions more quickly and focus on what they are really delivering to customers,” Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg told CNBC. Mastercard CEO Michael Miebach went on to tell the outlet the company expects small- and medium-sized businesses will represent the biggest area of growth for 5G contactless payments.
As for Verizon’s stake in all this, the company has a lot riding on the success of its 5G rollout. It spent $45.4 billion, more than AT&T and T-Mobile combined, in the recent Federal Communications Commission’s C-band auction to secure as mid-band spectrum as possible. Incidentally, 2023 is when the carrier expects its 5G network to provide coverage to 175 million people across the US.