There are seemingly dozens of companies trying to get in on the mobile payment space. Google Wallet was among the first to hit mainstream, though the company hasn’t done particularly well establishing partnerships with mobile carriers to get it off the ground. ISIS is an option supported by T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon Wireless, though there’s a limited support of vendors and consumers need to swap out SIM cards for special ISIS-ready options.
NFC was supposed to be the future. My next phone was going to include the technology, which would let me pay at any cash register by waving my phone instead of swiping my credit card. NFC would also let me touch phones with a friend to share a picture, tap my phone to a speaker to play music, and even unlock my phone with a ring or clip. NFC would someday even replace bar codes, according to Osama Bedier, the one-time head of Google Wallet and unofficial torchbearer of the NFC movement. Google’s contactless payments system was bound to take over the world. Until Google gave up on it.