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PayPal offers Payment by Text Messaging

Posted on 3.22.2006
Online payment company PayPal said recently they are preparing to offer a service for consumers to make purchases using mobile phones via text messaging. PayPal, a unit of eBay, Inc., will launch the service in the coming weeks.

Details can be found at the PayPal site, but here in a nutshell is how it will work:

When released, mobile phone users will send text messages to PayPal with the amount of money the sender wishes to transfer and the recipient's phone number. On the PayPal Web site, the company uses the example: "Send 5 to 4150001234". A PayPal computer then calls back the text message sender on the phone and asks the user to enter a secret PIN to confirm the transaction. PayPal then notifies the recipient and tells it how to claim the payment online.

Via eWeek, "While designed to make online payments more convenient for the nearly 100 million existing PayPal users, the move to offer a mobile payment service holds out the prospect of reaching vast markets in the developing world where phones, rather than computers, are the main way to connect to the Internet."
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