Gemalto, a leading digital security company, has been selected by Softbank Mobile for the latest mobile contactless payment trial in Japan. Softbank Mobile is a leading mobile operator in Japan with 21 million subscribers. The program is the first in Asia to enable secure mobile Near Field Communication (NFC) transactions from a choice of different credit card accounts. The pilot is expected to roll out in the first quarter of 2011.
Near Field Communication (NFC) is a short-range wireless technology that enables the communication between devices over a distance of less than 10 cm. The key benefits of NFC are compatibility with the existing contactless infrastructure and simplicity, as NFC is characterized by a natural and intuitive “just touch” movement.
“Gemalto’s end-to-end solution brings the simplicity and convenience of NFC, while ensuring interoperability across business partners in Japan and beyond.”
Softbank Mobile customers will be able to use their mobile phones for contactless payments in convenience stores, fast-food restaurants and theaters. The program also offers users the option to perform NFC transactions from two credit card issuers – Orient Corporation, the largest service provider of MasterCard PayPass in Japan, and Credit Saison, another Japanese leading financial institution. This is made possible by embedding multiple MasterCard PayPass applications in the secure UICC (Universal Integrated Circuit Card). UICC is the smart card used to authenticate the subscriber for GSM and UMTS/3G networks. Now in the pipeline for LTE, the UICC brings a host of fundamental features, tried and tested within GSM and now perfected for LTE.
For this program, Gemalto will provide a turnkey NFC solution comprised of its Allynis Trusted Services Management operated services, UICC cards and N-Flex devices. Gemalto’s trusted services allow for the secure deployment and management of contactless mobile payment. The N-Flex enables users to turn a conventional handset into an NFC-enabled mobile phone, without any change to the device.
“Gemalto’s end-to-end solution brings the simplicity and convenience of NFC, while ensuring interoperability across business partners in Japan and beyond,” commented Mr. Naoki Kinoshita, General Manager, SOFTBANK MOBILE. “Gemalto’s expertise in secure operated services will enable SOFTBANK MOBILE to focus on providing a broader range of value added services to our customers.”
“Japan is the most progressive country in the world when it comes to using the mobile phone for contactless services and Gemalto is delighted to support Softbank Mobile in this new project,” added Tan Teck-Lee, President, Gemalto Asia. “The advent of NFC in Japan will enable to massively deploy mobile contactless services in payments and other domains like transit, loyalty programs or couponing.”
Source: Business Wire