Mobile Payments Startup Jumio Takes On Card.io With Credit Card Scanning Toolkit For App Developers

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Mobile payments and identity verification company Jumio is introducing its Netswipe Mobile SDK today, which allows developers to add credit card scanning functionality to their mobile applications. The SDK (software development kit), is available now for iOS, but an Android version is coming soon, the company says.

To jump-start usage, Jumio is also waiving transaction fees for the SDK’s first users for a temporary period of time.

The company is calling this a “$5 million fund,” but it’s not really a fund – it’s a just a discount to developers who choose to implement the solution. They’ll be able to try out the Jumio SDK in their apps before committing to paying the extra cost of doing so. Jumio says it will cover the cost of the first 1,000 scans every month, but did not announce an end date for this promotion just yet. (Until the $5M runs out, it seems).

The SDK allows developers to integrate the card-scanning technology into their app, which means users can hold up a credit card to their smartphone’s camera in order to have the card “read” by the app and the numbers automatically entered into the correct fields. To confirm the purchase, the 3-digit CVV still has to be entered, however.

The technology is similar to what a lesser-funded competitor Card.io already has in place. In fact, while both companies have operated in the same space – “computer vision” for speeding up mobile payments – they’ve been coming at it from different angles. While Card.io started with SDKs for iOS and Android, then moved into web support for e-commerce sites, Jumio has been going the opposite direction. As of March, Card.io already had some 200 developers using its SDK.

The Jumio SDK for iOS is available for download here.