Telefónica Germany, Telekom and Vodafone have announced the formation of a new NFC payments joint venture under the ‘mpass’ brand.
Already used by subscribers for paying their bills via mobile phone, the mpass service will soon be expanded to enable mobile users on all of Germany’s networks to perform contactless transactions at the point of sale.
Peter Walz, member of the Management Board and Director of Wholesale & Strategy at Vodafone Deutschland, explains: “For many years now we have offered an interoperable payment product across all networks with payments via the phone bill. This is now being continued in the shared mpass activities. Retailers want standardized solutions and that is what we are giving them with mpass.”
The partners say they will soon sign an agreement to register mpass as its own company, which is expected to launch as early as this year. The new company will be responsible for marketing, sales and the development of new m-payment technology.
“Payment by mobile phone will increasingly feature in our daily lives,” said Michiel van Eldik, managing director of Wholesale & Partner Management at Telefónica Germany. “It has actually been possible for several years. And the first NFC smart phones, with full functionality for all aspects of credit and bonus cards, are already in the stores. I think that even as early as next year, consumers will be leaving their credit cards at home and paying by mobile phone instead.”