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Mastercard's goes digital with e-wallet 'Masterpass'

Mastercard, wary of the competition from electronic wallets, said it will start charging a controversial extra fee to some companies that want to run Mastercard transactions through their e-wallets.

Could electronic wallets become as common as cellphones? Paypal and Google sure hope so. The two companies see a future where you walk into a store and simply use your smartphone to pay. But competition is growing. Now MasterCard says it will start charging a controversial fee to some e-wallet companies that want to run MasterCard transactions. But the card company isn't stopping there. They are also developing an e-wallet of their own.

Ed McLaughlin, chief emerging payments officer for Mastercard, joins Marketplace Tech host David Brancaccio to discuss MasterCard's strategy for staying relevant in the mobile age.

About the author

David Brancaccio is the host of Marketplace Morning Report. Follow David on Twitter @DavidBrancaccio
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Payment by smartphone is a reality in more advanced countries, like Japan and S. Korea. There, payment processors realized that everyone benefits (i.e., the get more business) if they agree to free, common standards for e-wallets, so that they compete on the basis of their respective features and service, rather than on some artificial construct. Short-sighted greed by U.S. payment processors is what's holding back mobile payments.

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