PayPal Buys Mobile Payment Firm Fig Card

Online payments giant PayPal has moved to acquired a Boston based start-up that allows merchants to accept mobile payments via smartphones.

In a blog post, PayPal said that it had acquired mobile payments start-up Fig Card to boost its mobile portfolio to accommodate the changing retail landscape.

Fig Card developed a low cost USB device that was plugged into the cash register or the point-of-sale terminal that allow merchants to accept credit payment. In order to make the mobile payments, consumers needed to download and install the Fig Card application on their smartphone.

“We loved their approach to point-of-sale, particularly because it was driven by the same vision that we have at PayPal – in the future, transactions can be as smart as a computer and not as dumb as paper,” said Peter Chu, senior director of PayPal Mobile.

The company also said that Fig Card founders Max Metral and Hasty Granbery will join the PayPal Mobile team but did not elaborate on the fate of other Fig card employees.

Mobile payments are expected to form a huge chunk of the retail market in the future, with everybody from Google to Apple and Visa gearing up to offer their own versions of mobile payment services.