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Fifth Third Processing Teams with Firethorn for Mobile Services

Fifth Third Processing Solutions, the card and payment-processing arm of Cincinnati-based Fifth Third Bank, will offer its financial institution clients the m-banking solution from mobile developer Firethorn (Atlanta), a Qualcomm company. Fifth Third plans to roll out the service before the end of the year.

Firethorn's mobile banking solution will enable Fifth Third's customers to check account balances, view transaction details and transfer funds. Additionally, end-users will gain access to their account history and can make account balance inquiries through SMS. Future capabilities will include more advanced mobile transactions and mobile commerce, according to the companies.

Since Firethorn works with the mobile phone carriers to promote its m-commerce solution, Fifth Third Processing will be placed on the wireless handset of participating carriers, helping to drive adoption, according to Firethorn.

"At Fifth Third Processing Solutions, we see this relationship as more than reselling Firethorn's products," said Angela Brown, SVP and general manager of financial institutions services for the group, in a statement. "It also is an opportunity to creatively leverage the best aspects of both organizations' domain experience, moving mobile commerce to market quickly. This relationship allows us to gain momentum in this growing industry. This is a huge step forward in payment innovation."

According to a spokesperson for Fifth Third, this deal is completely separate from any mobile banking offerings Fifth Third plans to provide its retail bank customers.

Fifth Third Processing Solutions processes more than 26.7 billion ATM and POS transactions per year for more than 2,880 financial institutions and over 158,356 retail locations worldwide. It processes $179.1 billion in credit card sales annually.

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