Everything Everywhere, parent company of mobile operators T-Mobile and Orange, has announced that it is to partner with Barclaycard to bring Near Field Communications (NFC) payments to customer handsets, reducing the need for credit cards and cash.
Pocket-lint reports that the partnership signals the UK’s first commercial contactless mobile payments service and is due to be rolled out to customers by the Summer, possibly before July.
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It is thought that over 40,000 stores are already able to facilitate wireless payments, Barclaycard has already offered its own wireless payment system with embedded chips inside its credit cards, we assume this could help retailers accept payments without additional cost.
Gerry McQuade, chief development officer of Everything Everywhere said:
“This is the beginning of a revolution in how we pay for things on the high street. It’s a cultural shift that is as important as the launch of the personal credit card or ATMs.
“We’re making something that’s been talked about for many years a reality and very soon, using your mobile to buy a sandwich, a cinema ticket or in time, even something bigger like a computer will simply be the norm.”
Mastercard is to provide the payment security and it is thought the technology will be embedded in a customers SIM card.
Currently, the only handset capable of facilitating NFC payments in the UK is Google’s Nexus S smartphone, which shipped with the Gingerbread Android operating system and an NFC chip.
It is rumoured that both Apple and RIM are working on bringing NFC to their handsets, so it is only a matter of time until the technology becomes a little more widespread. It’s possible that many devices will be unveiled at Mobile World Congress in February, signalling the next phase of mobile payment technology.