eBay (NSDQ: EBAY) CEO John Donohoe plans to highlight the promise of its PayPal payments unit during the company’s annual meeting March 11, including plans it has for the mobile space, according to BusinessWeek. The mostly online service today lets millions of people pay for stuff without using credit-cards.
In mobile, PayPal gained a big win recently when Research In Motion picked its payment system to operate its upcoming application store. That compares to Apple (NSDQ: AAPL), which uses iTunes for the iPhone, Google (NSDQ: GOOG), which uses its own Google Checkout, and Nokia (NYSE: NOK), which plans to use either credit cards or operator billing platforms, when it launches its application store.
PayPal SVP Jack Stephenson said they are also working on ways to make PayPal available on billions of lower-end phones, as a way to provide an option for people who don’t have credit cards or bank accounts. One way they can do that is by letting users buy pre-paid PayPal cards at a local shop, which can be redeemed over the phone. PayPal said it is also working on building a software developers kit, so that it becomes easy for developers to integrate PayPal into their products. The kit will be released this year.
Although this sounds like a viable new payment option in mobile, especially as developers look for ways around working with the carrier, PayPal still has a long road ahead of it. Today, the world still uses cash and checks for 50 percent of all transactions. In the U.S., PayPal is only being used 12 percent of the time for online purchases. In Europe, its share is in the single digits, however, it’s growing fast there because PayPal works well for cross-border transactions that involve multiple currencies and incompatible financial systems.