To save this holiday season, it may pay to pull out your phone instead of your cash. But don't plan to leave your wallet at home just yet.
As mobile wallet technologies race to attract consumers, more platforms—and their retail partners—are using incentives to get shoppers to pay without pulling out cash or a credit card. "Most companies are offering some kind of incentive to get them to download the app on their phone and use it," said Jeff Berry, senior director of research and development for LoyaltyOne.
For example, users of Softcard (a mobile wallet platform that's a joint venture of AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon) can get credits of up to $30 just for using the technology, as well as exclusive deals with retailers including Toys 'R Us, Van Heusen and Neiman Marcus Last Call. Wells Fargo is currently offering $20 credits for Apple Pay users who try the technology. Restaurants on mobile payment app Dash offer incentives like a free beer or slice of cheesecake. And Starbucks' popular mobile app—which the company recently said generates 7 million mobile payments a week—integrates loyalty rewards and personalized deals.
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