Japanese mobile network operator NTT DoCoMo is forming a joint venture company with electronics giant Sony to develop technology that will enable subscribers to pay for purchases using their mobile hand sets.
The joint venture, called FeliCa Networks, is targeted to be set up by January 2004.
Under the deal, Sony's chip technology, FeliCa will be embedded in NTT DoCoMo hand sets, allowing custoimres to pay for purchases at the point of sale by waving their mobile phone towards an electronic reader.
Purchases will credited to phone bills or to bank accounts and credit cards.
A trial of the mobile payments service will be launched will be launched in Japan this December, with a full roll out tentatively fixed for March 2005.