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playspan 1PlaySpan, a maker of virtual goods platforms for games, is launching a new way to pay for goods using eBay’s PayPal technology for electronic payments. The result will make it easier for consumers to pay for virtual goods — from better weapons to fancy clothing — in online games.

The new payment system combines PlaySpan’s virtual goods platform with PayPal’s popular electronic payments service. PayPal is launching a new Adaptive Payments application programming interface, a part of its new PayPal X platform, which lets customers make PayPal purchases directly inside social networks.

It’s all about breaking down the barriers that stop consumers from making impulse purchases in online games. Currently, PayPal users have to visit another web page when they indicate that they want to pay for a virtual good with PayPal. But many users tend to cancel transactions that take them out of a game or social app. So now, with the PlaySpan-based virtual good platform, PayPal users can make a purchase inside the game. Consumers will thus be able to make faster and easier transactions. PayPal will give the users a PIN code they can use to authenticate their purchases while still inside a game.

PlaySpan’s Spare Change payment network will be the first product to use this service. Spare Change enables micro-transactions for more than 500 apps on Facebook.


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Karl Mehta, chief executive of Santa PlaySpan, said that the new system should enable games to reach higher revenues per user. PlaySpan’s virtual goods platforms are used in more than 1,000 online games, virtual worlds and social networks.

The PlaySpan-PayPal teamup makes sense. Keeping users inside an app, even when they pay for something, is becoming quite fashionable, as our story on Obopay noted last week.


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