Send $$$: PayPal to offer paying by text message

Online payment company PayPal is preparing to offer a service that will let consumers make purchases or money transfers using simple text messaging via mobile phones, the company said on Wednesday.

The move by PayPal, a unit of online auctioneer eBay, marks a big step in bridging the worlds of e-commerce and the physical world of brick-and-mortar stores by giving consumers a pay-as-you-go option via phones, analysts said.

The service, known as PayPal Mobile, will be launched in the next couple of weeks in the United States, Canada and Britain. Other markets worldwide will follow for the world’s biggest online payments service.

“PayPal is going to be launching a mobile-payments product,” PayPal spokeswoman Sara Bettencourt told Reuters.

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