Microsoft is preparing to follow Apple and Google into mobile payments, lining up the regulatory approvals needed for the launch of a host card emulation-based service. The State of Idaho (Department of Finance) was one of the first ones to issue the money transmitter license to the Redmond giant. Microsoft has filed for all 50 States for their money transmitter licenses.
Last month the firm showed off the tap and pay mobile payments system for handsets running its new Windows 10 operating system at a conference in China. As well as support for Secure Element-based payments, it also taps HCE, according to finextra.com.
This prompted fintech consultant Faisal Khan to dig around State financial regulator sites looking for evidence that Microsoft had received money transmitter licenses. Khan says that the firm has filed in all 50 States and has received its first license in Idaho.
„With the grant of the Idaho Money Transmitter License, Microsoft has formally entered into the world of payments.” says Faisal Khan on his blog.
Microsoft has not commented on any imminent launch, but the expected move will see Windows phone users join Android and iOS customers in being able to make NFC payments.
„Though Libra has met with fierce resistance from central banks and supervisory authorities and might never see the light of day, in many other cases tech firms (both start-ups and established big players) have successfully captured bits and pieces of universal banks’ traditional value chain. This trend may only intensify in the coming years. In this environment, European banks remain squeezed.”