Singapore telcos launch NFC mobile wallets

Singapore telcos launch NFC mobile wallets

Singapore wireless operators SingTel and M1 have both launched mobile contactless payments services, enabling customers to make purchases by tapping their handsets at the point of sale.

Last year, Singapore's government appointed a consortium - including European vendor Gemalto, Citibank, DBS Bank and pre-paid card specialist EZ-Link - to build a S$40 million interoperable NFC infrastructure for mobile payments.

Earlier this month, StarHub became the first telco to unveil an NFC wallet taking advantage of the infrastructure and it has now been joined by M1 and SingTel.

SingTel says that the mobile payments service that it has developed with EZ-Link will allow customers who buy an NFC SIM to make cashless payments by tapping supported handsets at terminals at over 20,000 points island-wide that accept EZ-Link, such as taxis, supermarkets and fast food chains.

The EZ-Link app can be downloaded from the Google Play store for use on NFC-enabled Android mobile handsets, enabling customers to check transaction history and balances, and top-up the purse with any debit or credit card.

The app can be topped up over-the-air, meaning SingTel customers can easily download and top-up on the go, with just their NFC-enabled phone and credit cards.

Gan Siok Hoon, VP, m-commerce, SingTel, says: "The NFC solution that we are launching today is the first of many innovative mobile services that SingTel will unveil. We will progressively launch differentiated services that enhance our customers' lifestyles and provide them with a unique mobile commerce experience, ranging from payments to value-added services."

Meanwhile, M1 has also been working with EZ-Link and MasterCard on its wallet. Customers who buy an NFC SIM and certified handset (Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy S Advance or Sony Xperia S) will be able to make contactless payments at merchants that accept Paypass and EZ-Link.

The M1 Mobile Wallet lets users to obtain information on available NFC services, as well as manage their account and settings, such as default cards, initiating payments, viewing transaction details and password amendments. M1 has also implemented a wallet passcode as an additional security measure, which is required before processing manual payment transactions.

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