PayByPhone, an international provider of systems for parking and urban mobility payments, today announced one of the largest deployments of near field communications (NFC) payment solutions in the world. The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which selected the PayByPhone mobile payment system for parking, is currently adding NFC-enabled stickers to the city’s 30,800 parking spaces to give drivers the option to pay for parking with NFC-enabled mobile phones in addition to mobile apps and mobile web for regular phones. All parking meters continue to accept payment with coins.
The PayByPhone system, already deployed in the city’s Castro district will be extended citywide as installation of the stickers is completed. The PayByPhone NFC sticker has a passive electronic chip that does not require a battery and stores information such as the parking space number that can be read wirelessly by any NFC-enabled phone.
Since each meter in San Francisco will have a PayByPhone sticker, users can simply wave or tap their NFC-enabled phones over the NFC sticker on the meter to automatically launch the parking application. The mobile payment system recognizes the user, identifies the individual parking location, and the driver enters the desired parking time to complete the transaction. The system then sends a text message reminder before the parking period expires, and if needed, allows additional time to be purchased by phone from any location (subject to time limit restrictions). A receipt is automatically sent to the user’s email account. Payment is processed against a credit or debit card associated with the mobile phone number.
“This is one of the largest deployments of NFC technology in the United States and shows the practical benefits this technology can deliver in terms of ease of use and convenience. There has been a lot of hype around NFC recently and PayByPhone is pleased to now put the technology in the field for real world applications,” said Neil Podmore, VP of Business Development at PayByPhone. “We expect this to help kick start the more widespread adoption and understanding of the practical benefits of NFC in 2012.”
The installation of mobile electronic payment systems is already catching the imagination of cities and towns around the world. With a proven role of providing parking authorities with efficient, easier-to-manage and cost effective solutions also comes real-time data to fine tune parking policies and provide parking guidance systems.
Analyst firm Juniper Research predicted that consumers around the world could generate as much as $50 billion in sales through NFC-based mobile payments by 2014. The potential for this nascent technology is huge, according to Jupiter.
PayByPhone, the largest provider of payment systems for parking across North America, has ongoing contracts in more than 60 cities, towns and universities including Miami; Dallas; Vancouver, BC; London, Paris and now San Francisco, the largest installation in the United States. Worldwide, the company handles more than 55,000 transactions per day. The company experienced rapid growth in FY 2011, logging an estimated 8 million transactions over the first six month period.