Some of the world's biggest retailers are getting into the mobile payment application sphere with the formation of a new company aimed at making paying easier and more customized.

Announced earlier this week, the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) is a joint effort between major companies like 7-Eleven, Best Buy, CVS, Lowe's, Sears and Shell Oil.

In all, more than a dozen merchants are teaming up through MCX to develop a "mobile-payments network" that's better than services like Google Wallet and Isis.

As reported by Hot Hardware, the group's initial members account for about $1 trillion in sales annually.

Swipe and save...customer info

Though still in its early stages, MCX's partners have high hopes for the initiative.

According to the Wall Street Journal, "industry executives are convinced that customers eventually will be just as comfortable buying with their phones as they now are when using credit cards and debit cards."

The initial focus will reportedly be on the ability to offer merchants a way to integrate information on consumer offers, promotions and retail programs, delivering information on deals to customers as they become available.

In a sector that's expected to grow by $600 billion globally by 2016, these merchants are certainly jumping on the mobile payment app bandwagon at the right time.

Square announced a mobile payment deal with Starbucks last week and the U.S.'s top cellular carriers created the Mobile Payments Committee just two days later.

Of course, a benefit to each of these companies is the ability to gather detailed purchasing information from their customers.

Via Hot Hardware and The Wall Street Journal