MWC 2014: MasterCard unveils MasterPass in-app secure payments

Over at Mobile World Congress, MasterCard has announced that it has extended the functionality of its MasterPass digital wallet service, providing coverage for in-app payments on mobile devices.

MasterCard brought MasterPass to the UK last summer, and the service allows online shoppers to store card details, shipping/billing addresses and the like in one handy place. A purchase is made by simply clicking the “Buy With MasterPass” option at supporting websites.

With this new addition, mobile apps will be able to embed MasterPass, allowing users to make in-app purchases with one touch. MasterCard promises that the “highest levels of security and cryptology” will be protecting transactions, too.

The first apps to incorporate MasterPass will include Forbes Digital Commerce, Fat Zebra, NoQ, and Starbucks Australia, when the system becomes available to developers in Q2.

Ed McLaughlin, Chief Emerging Payments Officer at MasterCard, commented: “MasterPass in-app payments is the latest offering from MasterCard to address the specific needs of the digital ecosystem. [We’re] developing a framework to make all payments using MasterPass as or more secure than anything we can do on cards today, ensuring that consumers can benefit from the highest possible levels of security.”

MasterCard cites research estimating that the average smartphone user has 26 apps (according to ABI Research), and some of those will require in-app payments and storage of credit card details. Obviously it’s a neater and more secure system to have those payment details stored in one place, rather than scattered across multiple apps.

We’ll be meeting up with MasterCard and chewing this over in more detail soon, so stay tuned.

For all the releases, updates, and some beautiful photos of the latest gadgets, check out our live coverage of all the action from Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.