Moneto has announced that is has expanded its flagship Near Field Communication (NFC) platform to Android, and has added support for six Samsung Galaxy S devices. This is in addition to the iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, and iPhone 4S, which were already supported by the company. The moneto platform is different than other “virtual wallets” because it uses a special microSD card, allowing it to function even in devices that don’t have built-in NFC hardware.
The microSD card also contains 1 GB of storage so users don’t have to give up their card slot when it comes to storing movies, videos, music, etc. When it comes to paying at a point-of-sale register, the functionality is just like the Samsung Galaxy Nexus or other NFC-endabled devices. The difference is that moneto requires users to use a special prepaid card. By contrast, Google Wallet, for example, has a partnership with Citi that allows select credit card customers to link their existing account for seamless payment.
And in the future, these kind of banking relationships are expected to grow, especially when the mobile joint venture Isis launches. There is concern that these competing NFC platforms will lead to confusion and slow growth in the market, but the NFC momentum is too strong to stop at this point. The moneto update makes the following devices compatible: Samsung Fascinate at Verizon; iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and Epic 4G at Sprint; and Samsung Vibrant and Galaxy S 4G at T-Mobile.