Wallet

Could a Windows Phone Wallet expansion be in the works now that Apple had introduced Apple Pay for iPhone users? While nothing has been announced by Microsoft, the company has poached rival Amazon's product leader of Payments in Iain Kennedy. Described as a 6-year veteran at Amazon, Kennedy had worked on the company's "local commerce efforts."

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How to redeem Xbox or Windows Store gift cards

Did someone just give you an Xbox gift card, Windows Store gift card, prepaid card, or promotional code? They usually come in the form of cards with a 25-character code. You can use these prepaid codes to make purchases without a credit card. We'll show you how you can redeem the codes on your Xbox One, Windows Phone device, or your computer.

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MobiKwik is a fast growing mobile wallet service in India with popular Android and iOS apps. Finally, the app arrived on Windows Phone over the weekend, allowing users the convenience and security to purchase goods and services on third party merchant websites, recharge prepaid and post-paid mobile, television/DTH, data cards and make bill payments for broadband/landline phones, electricity, gas, and insurance.

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There are a handful of official airlines with apps on Windows Phone. Delta, United and American Airlines being the largest for US customer that have apps in the Store. American Airlines just received an update today that should make frequent flyers on the airline pretty happy. Let’s check out the new features in American Airlines for Windows Phone 8.

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CloudZync (www.zync.co.uk) is a British mobile commerce company that has launched an app for Windows Phone. With 280 merchants and stores already signed up, Zync Wallet makes it so you don't need to carry along a wallet in your pocket with numerous cards and cash at hand. Relying on your mobile phone for almost everything in life, mobile payments are slowly catching on with deployment taking place using NFC capabilities.

This Windows Phone app aims to help consumers take steps to make it easier to pay for services and goods with loyalty cards and more.

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Like getting a great price on things? Don’t like the green color of Groupon? Or just a die-hard LivingSocial.com fan? Either answer will bring you to the new official, LivingSocial app that is now available on the Windows Phone 8 Store.

LivingSocial (www.livingsocial.com) is a similar service to Groupon in that it highlights local deals for pre-purchase. Think plays, lessons, events and various services around your area for a better idea. The company has been around for years but it seems like Groupon, for better or worse, has had greater media coverage, resonating more with the public.

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Microsoft will be adding the option for consumers to utilise gift cards on the Windows Store and Xbox Live, but the company has already enabled the payment gateway on the Windows Phone Store. Adding a gift card to the Wallet, a feature in Windows Phone 8, smartphone owners can use the cards to charge app, music and media purchases. 

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Keep retail cards in one place with Store Card Buddy

Wallet integration in Windows Phone is a useful way for credit / debit and other cards to be stored for use, without carrying around the pesky wallet (hence the naming of the app itself). Software developer Scott Lovegrove (@scottisafool) has created an app called Store Card Buddy to further expand on this functionality and provide a means for consumers to store and generate retail / store cards.

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Valpak (www.valpak.com) is set to drag coupon deals and offers into the Windows Phone Wallet with a new release for the mobile platform, according to a recently published press release. The company sells itself as the leader in local print and digital coupons, providing consumers ample opportunities to save the pennies for a rainy day. An app for Windows Phone has been available for a while, but Wallet integration is set to be a new addition.

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Tip: How to protect your Wallet in Windows Phone 8

Purchasing apps and games on a Windows Phone is an absolute breeze. Trials are a unique opportunity for developers to allow consumers to download and "try" their work before committing to a purchase. But with the speedy process in purchasing apps from the Store, should there be some level of protection for credit cards that are attached to a Microsoft Account?

Currently, anyone who has access to a Windows Phone that has a Microsoft Account loaded with valid credit cards for transactions can head into the Store and engage in a shopping spree - this isn't a good situation to be in but it can occur with children or other folk who borrow a smartphone for a few minutes. Luckily, Microsoft has a solution for this issue.

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Do you have Windows Phone 8 (see review)? Okay, well probably not quite yet but if you are about to get one and you have some Bing points sitting by (you know, those things you get for every time you do a search using Bing on your computer), you can use 'em for the Windows Phone Store.

Yup, Bing Rewards has two special Windows Phone 8 offers on hand--one for 170 credits ($1.25) and one for 525 credits ($5). Redeeming them will turn into credits/voucher for the Store, which you can then use to buy Windows Phone apps...

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Microsoft seems to be constantly tweaking and fine tuning the Windows Phone Store experience. The latest upgrades will be seen with Windows Phone 8 store and covers a few design changes, a little under the hood tweaks and a hand full of new features.  All designed to help consumers with app and game selection and to help developers get thier works seen.

If you are curious if an app or game has Live Tile support, the Details Page of the application will make note if the app has a Live Tile.  This may not be a major improvement but how many out there have been curious is an app or game they are shopping for has Live Tile support and it's not noted in the description?

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Introducing the Windows Phone 8 Wallet

One of the new features with Windows Phone 8 is the Wallet app. Microsoft has added a digital wallet that you can use to keep your debit, credit, loyalty and membership card information handy on your Windows Phone.

The Wallet app also has the ability to find other apps to link with that can provide additional information on that card or account such as balance and transaction history. Wallet can also be used to find and share local shopping deals.

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Pinnable CC's and new notifications

Many of the new features of Windows Phone 8 are already known due to the leaked SDK over the summer but exactly how some of it will look is still a bit unclear.

Take for example the NFC Wallet app. It’s a safe assumption that it will allow many different options—storage of coupons, deal cards, frequent flier pass and of course your credit cards. It’s also not too wild of a guess that Microsoft will allow you to pin those to your Start screen for quick and easy access.

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Today Microsoft has officially unveiled Wallet for the forthcoming Windows Phone 8 OS.  Windows Phone Wallet combines two popular features into one, specifically near-field communication (NFC) support for transaction in addition to an account manager for your frequently used credit cards, frequent flier passes and other personal data.

The Wallet feature will be built into the existing “Hub Model” of Windows Phone giving users quick and seamless access to their personal financial data and enabling wireless near-field communication payments where such systems exist. The storage aspect of Wallet enables users to store payment instructions, deals, and loyalty cards.

Even more impressive is the fact that developers can add and manage items in the wallet, define payment instruments and interact with NFC, giving them yet another opportunity on the WP8 platform. Developers can also link to Wallet for in-app purchases, which is also a new feature for Windows Phone 8.

While Android has NFC payments via Google Wallet and Apple has introduced Passbook to handle and store personal information, only Windows Phone 8 combines both into a single feature accessible to all users with new Windows Phone 8 hardware.

Finally, transaction service Paypal is officially supported in Windows Phone 8 directly through Wallet, enabling users to avoid using credit cards or carrier-billing, giving them yet another option for external payments or new the new in-app payment system introduced in Windows Phone 8.

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Yesterday, Apple Inc. finally revealed their latest iteration of iOS for iPhone and the iPad.  There were no real "wow" moments just the continued rehash of market numbers and a collection of little improvements to the world-wide hit operating system.

We're not trying to be too bitter here--look, Apple and iOS have a massive success on their hands so they're not messing with a good thing (think of all the grandparents with iPhones!). But today's unveiling of the new iOS is starting to show that Cupertino may be out of "big" ideas for mobile and are instead concentrating on refinements. That's not exactly a bad thing and we don't necessarily blame them, especially with their strong market share. But it sure does make for some boring discussion.

Our friends at iMore were there for the whole event, turtlenecks and all, documenting all the new additions to the sixth version of the OS.  Due this fall, here is their summary of the major changes:

  • Maps - Probably the biggest news was the addition of Apple's own Maps app which will be powered by TomTom. Maps will come stock with turn-by-turn navigation, traffic info, and a new feature called Flyover.
  • Siri additions and enhancements- Siri received quite a few updates under iOS 6 including iPad support, integration with many car manufacturers, and several new features. 
  • Passbook - Passbook is a brand new way to store and save airline apps, boarding passes, and more all in one place. Many different services and Passbook apps are already available such as express check at hotels, Target cards, movie tickets, coupons, and more.
  • Photo Stream sharing - Photo Stream sharing will allow you to create separate streams (similar to how you'd create albums currently). You can then share those separate streams with whoever you'd like. Have one with family for vacation pics and one with mom and dad for baby pics. They'll also be given the ability to comment and like photos native in iOS.
  • Mail enhancements - Multiple e-mail signatures, VIP Mailbox allows you to add all the important people in your life to a VIP list and their messages will automatically be filtered into a new VIP mailbox that appears under your default inbox.
  • Facebook integration - In iOS 5 we saw Apple integrate Twitter into iOS natively. This year the same will happen with Facebook. Post status, upload pictures, and more without needing a third party app.
  • FaceTime over the cellular network - FaceTime has only ever been available for us on a Wi-Fi network since it's release in iOS 4. iOS 6 is about to change all that and you'll soon be able to FaceTime wherever you are, Wi-Fi or 3G/4G.

Read more after the break for some exclusive Windows Phone 8 news...

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