Japanese card company JCB is teaming with NTT DoCoMo Shikoku and Symbol Tower Development Corporation to offer its QuicPay Mobile contactless payment service at 23 stores and restaurants in Takamatsu City's Symbol Tower this month.
The service is targeted at the 1500 office workers in the buildin, and is available to the general public as well, enabling users to make purchases in public shopping and dining areas by waving their mobile phone at the cash register.
Launched by JCB in 2003, QuicPay takes advantage of fast offline processing so that a purchase can be made in less than one second, much quicker than payment by cash. A part of the customer's existing credit limit is assigned to a contactless IC chip, which may be embedded in a plastic card or in a mobile phone handset as in the current option launched at Takamatsu Symbol Tower. QuicPay purchases are linked to the cardholder's existing JCB credit card account so that users can earn loyalty points on their spending.
Masatoshi Sakamoto, assistant vice president, strategic market development department, JCB in Osaka says plans are afoot to develop value added marketing opportunities for retailer participants "including services that merchants can use to have discount coupons e-mailed to the customer's mobile phone, and to have purchase discounts deducted from the customer's JCB credit card bill".
JCB has been testing the QuicPay Mobile payment service since November 2004, starting with a taxi trial project launched for 30 cabs equipped with portable readers. The firm is currently conducting a trial in the Tokyo metropolitan area in cooperation with the major cosmetics manufacturer and retailer FANCL Corporation. In addition, Seicomart, a large convenience store chain in Hokkaido, will be implementing a six-month trial of QuicPay from June to November 2005 at 10 of its outlets in Sapporo.