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Discover Card launches mobile offerings for cardholder convenience

Discover Financial Services has launched a new service that gives cardholders more control over their finances and grants them easier and timelier access to important account information.

The Mobile Account Activity reminders let registered users on Discover's Web site log in and select any of eight Account Activity reminders accessible via text message or email. The optional Mobile Reminders keep cardholders in the know when it comes to their account.

"Developing mobile reminders was a natural evolution in Discover's mobile strategy," said Steve Furman, director of ebusiness at Discover, Riverwoods, IL. "We wanted to make account information available to our card members in a convenient manner that allows them to better manage their accounts."

Discover Financial Services is a credit card and electric payment services giant.

Cardholders get alerts such as Statement Available, Payment Posted, Balance Transfer Poster, Merchant Credit/Refund Posted, Minimum Payment Not Received, Purchase Exceeds Specific Amount, Balance Exceeds Specified Amount and Nearing Account Credit Limit.

The exceeding balance feature has been accessible through the card member's account for several years via email, but will now be accessible on mobile phones as well.

"Enabling card members to receive timely account activity alerts via their mobile device provides an additional service channel that helps further support Discover Card's mission to help customers spend smarter and manage debt better," Mr. Furman said.

Additionally, registered users will be able use the service to balance their debts and opt in to receive notifications if they are nearing their credit limit or if they have a made a purchase which exceeds a specified amount.

These customized notifications are set up in the user's account preferences. A certain amount is specified and a reminder is sent in SMS or email form when he or she makes a purchase exceeding this amount.

The user can also sign up to receive an SMS or email notification if their balance has reached or exceeded a certain amount.

"As we continue to develop our strategy, listening to our customers and evaluating each phase of our approach will become increasingly important," Mr. Furman said.

Cardholders will also be able to manage their accounts directly through Discover.com Mobile, which is accessible directly from their mobile phone's browser.

The mobile site offers a simplified version of the Discover.com account summary interface.

By accessing the mobile version of the Discover site, users will be able to make payments, view recent transactions, view recent and pending payments as well as rewards activity directly from their mobile phones.

"Given the difficult economy, we believe that card members are looking for easier solutions to help them manage their accounts," Mr. Furman said.