Hong Kong's Octopus Group to trial mobile transit payments

Hong Kong's Octopus Group to trial mobile transit payments

Hong Kong transit card operator Octopus Group is set to introduce mobile payments as an alternative to contactless cards for passengers travelling on the territory's public transport network.

Sunny Cheung Yiu-tong, chief executive of Octopus Group told the South China Morning Post that the firm was experimenting with mobile payments in an effort to keep pace with new NFC payment services offered by local banks such as Hang Seng and HSBC.

In March, the Hong Kong Monetary Authority also pledged to work with the region's banks and telcos to foster the development of a nationwide interopable NFC infrastructure for mobile payments.

The first phones capable of handling Ocotpus payments are expected to be available in the fourth quarter, with a transaction fee limit of HK$1000.

Octopus phone users will need to install a special SIM card in their smartphone to pay at the turnstile. Sony and Samsung announced some of their phones will be the first to handle mobile Octopus payments.

With more than 22 million Octopus cards in circulation, the Hong Kong transit system handles more than 12 million transactions valued at more than HK$130 million (US$16.76 million) everyday.

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