Amazon has quietly released a new Android and Fire Phone app, dubbed Amazon Wallet, which lets users scan cards with their phone and save them in the Amazon cloud, so they’re easily accessible when needed.
Amazon’s first attempt at its own mobile wallet application, designed for use at POS, has
made a quiet debut on the Amazon App store and on Google Play. However, the current implementation of the new “Amazon Wallet” application is fairly simple – it doesn’t yet support mobile payments or the ability to store credit cards or debit cards. Instead, the wallet only offers the ability to store and organize your gift cards and other store and loyalty cards.
According to the app’s description, Amazon Wallet lets you either scan or type in your gift card, loyalty card and membership card’s information to “reduce the clutter in your leather wallet or purse.” The cards are then available in a digital format as a barcode, QR code, text or image. For dozens of supported merchants, consumers are also able to check the balance of their stored gift cards.
In addition to the mobile application, Amazon also has a website for its Amazon Wallet service at amazon.com/wallet where you can log in and add other gift cards to your account to have them appear in the mobile app. Here, you can manage your other payment methods – including credit cards, debit cards, and checking accounts – which can be used while shopping on Amazon.com, though not at POS.
Though these additional payment methods aren’t available in the current implementation of the Amazon Wallet application, the company is known to have broader ambitions aimed at establishing itself as a payments competitor to the likes of PayPal or Google Wallet – especially in terms of P2P, as well as an alternative to Square and others, where the Kindle tablet would serve as a merchant’s point-of-sale.
Amazon Wallet, as a consumer-facing piece to this larger puzzle, is only in its early stages. It is a hint of what’s to come, if not the finalized product.