O2, a European mobile operator and subsidiary of Telefonica, has announced its strategy to launch contactless mobile payment, according to mobilebusinessbriefing.com.
In 2008, O2 collaborated with Visa, Barclays and Transport for London to pilot London’s Oyster travel cards on Nokia smart handsets to kick off its O2 Wallet initiative.
Then in 2009, O2 partnered with MasterCard and Natwest to bring NFC to a university campus, where users created various solutions including a door unlocking feature for the dorms.
Earlier this year, O2 shifted its focus to trialing SIM-based mobile payment at the 2010 GSMA Mobile World Congress with partners Visa and Samsung.
Andy Ramsden, head of payment products at O2, says Telefonica is planning further trials for 2010, including one at Sitges, a small city about 35 kms southwest of Barcelona, Spain, and another at Distrito C, Telefonica’s HQ in Madrid.
According to Ramsden, the main challenges facing O2 are a lack of infrastructure, the need for cooperation between operators, retailers and banks, and the need to create clearly defined revenue models for all investing parties.
“Collaboration is key and necessary around a suite of common standards,” added Ramsden. “Infrastructure needs to be rolled out – we need to keep pushing.”
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