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Handset makers urged to drive m-payment

19 ноября 2008

The role of handset manufacturers will be key to the advancement of mobile payment services, the GSM Association said on Tuesday, insisting there is strong demand for these services.

In an announcement made alongside the Mobile Asia Congress in Macau this week, the industry body threw its weight behind the ETSI-endorsed Single Wire Protocol standard, which it insists should be built into handsets from mid-2009.

The standard is designed to provide the interface between the SIM card and NFC chipset in the phone.

"There is no doubt that there is a huge latent demand for a large variety of mobile transaction services," proximity payments in particular, said GSMA CEO Rob Conway, drawing attention to trials taking place worldwide.

Rolling out mobile payment services efficiently and cost-effectively, "will require device manufacturers to make sure that the vast majority of commercially available handsets incorporate the Single Wire Protocol and near-field communications features as standard,"
Conway added.

Under the GSMA's Pay-Buy-Mobile initiative, involving a number of major credit card companies, there are trials taking place in eight countries in Europe, Asia and
North America involving nine mobile operators. Further pilot projects are in the pipeline.

's FarEasTone reported that 90% of its 200 m-payment triallists provided positive feedback, while 94% of France's 1,000 Payez Mobile triallists said they would recommend the service to others.

South Korea, mobile payments for public transport proved popular and, according to mobile operators SKT and KTF, will likely encourage take-up of other types of m-payment.

"We observed great potential for mobile payment services through T-money," said Sang Ryul Lee, VP of KTF's Transaction Business Group.

"We believe it is changing the behaviour of users and expect it to see significantly increasing demand over time," Lee added. "Supportive actions and collaborations with banks and especially handset vendors will help to speed up this demand."

French incumbent
Orange also backed up the GSMA's argument.

"Orange has run trials in France, Spain and the U.K. which show a consistent appeal to consumers in all countries for SIM-based, operator-managed, mobile NFC services," said Mung-Ki Woo, VP payment and contactless at Orange.

Orange, mass deployment is now mainly dependent on handset manufacturers providing a large range of adequate handsets," he said.

Similarly, "we see potential in the market for NFC-based mobile payment services, which can be seen from our customers and banks' feedback," said Cenk Serdar, chief VAS officer at Turkcell. "We believe that the customers may gradually adopt our services once the supporting handsets are on the market."

Источник: Total Telecom

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