As part of its global mobile strategy, Visa has launched a mobile phone payments platform, laying the foundation for the commercial availability of mobile payments and services to millions of mobile phone users around the world.

According to Visa, the move is designed to encourage cross-industry collaboration and innovation between financial services and mobile telecommunications, for the delivery of mobile payment applications and payment-related services.

The platform, which comprises a suite of technology tools and applications, security standards and business models, is designed to make it easier for Visa issuers, mobile operators and technology providers to deliver an integrated consumer experience across a range of services, enabling consumers to better monitor account activity and manage their funds.

Patrick Gauthier, senior vice president of innovation at Visa International, commented: The launch of the mobile platform is a significant industry milestone because it will enable innovative trials and go-to-market strategies for mobile payment services globally.

Visa, which has previously been involved in mobile payment trials in the US and Malaysia, has developed the platform in partnership with a number of diversified mobile technology companies. According to the company, the new platform is flexible and complementary to existing technologies, ensuring seamless integration with global wireless technology and payments infrastructures.

Visa is taking a tiered approach to the introduction of the new platform, allowing involved parties to take advantage of immediate opportunities while building towards a complete mobile payments program. While the initial version of the platform offers solutions for contactless mobile payment, over-the-air (OTA) personalization, coupons and direct marketing, subsequent versions will also include solutions for remote payment and person-to-person payment.

Mary Ann O’Loughlin, senior vice president of consumer practice at analyst and consulting company Ovum North America, commented: By developing the mobile platform and engaging key industry stakeholders, Visa is leading the charge to simplify and jump-start the development of innovative mobile payment services.