Visa Releases iPhone App, Deploys Location-Based Technology For Offers

Giant retail electronic payments network operator Visa has released a free iPhone app in the United States, giving users access to over 50 merchant offers ranging from clothing and dining to entertainment, just in time for the holiday shopping season.

The app will allow retailers such as New York & Company, Planet Hollywood, Holiday Inn, Hard Rock Café and Zales to automatically deliver exclusive offers to Visa account holders.

Account holders with Visa Signature cards will receive special Visa Signature offers in addition to the standard offers.

Offers are stored in the application, can be tailored to users’ preferences, and can be redeemed either online or at physical retail locations.

Furthermore, the app boasts location-based technology that provides consumers with a map and directions to a nearby retailer where they can redeem offers, as well as the nearest ATM.

Visa says it is working closely with handset makers, carriers and technology providers worldwide to bring Visa payment facilities to the mobile channel. The Visa Mobile application for the iPhone was developed in partnership with Monitise, a UK-based mobile banking and payments platform company.

Visa signed a global alliance with Monitise in June 2009 to custom-develop mobile services for Visa across a variety of handsets.

In addition, Visa last week announced the commercial availability of mobile contactless payments enabled by DeviceFidelity’s In2Pay microSD solution (more about that here).

Visa has also developed an Android application, but participation in the program for the platform is currently limited to select U.S. Bank debit cardholders.