London software testing news UK

Telco testing UK mobile-payment solution

Posted in Acceptance testing by testing in London on November 29, 2007

From Card Technology

Mobile network operator O2 today launched Britain’s first major trial of NFC-based mobile payment–testing how well consumers will take to tapping mobile phones to cover transit fares and make retail purchases.

More than 500 O2 subscribers will take part in the six-month test, using contactless phones to board metro trains, buses and trams throughout London, with the city’s popular Oyster transit purse. And major UK credit card issuer Barclaycard will allow about half of the trial participants to spend up to £200 to make low-value purchases at any of about 1,000 merchant locations in London now accepting contactless cards.

“This isn’t a technology trial,” Colin Swain, head of research and development at Barclaycard, told Card Technology following a press conference in London today. “This is very much a focused test: How does the customer feel about using mobile phones for payment.”

The trial is significant among the dozens of NFC pilots launched over the past two and a half years because it involves major players in the mobile, banking and transit industries and taps into one of the largest fare-collection schemes in the world in Oyster, owned by Transport for London.

The operators could generate other revenue, as well, for example, by encouraging subscribers to send or receive more data or make additional voice calls. As part of the O2 trial, subscribers will be able to tap chips embedded in smart posters, which will automatically dial a number, send a text message or download a URL that could open a mobile Internet session. A subscriber, for instance, could tap his phone on a chip embedded in a movie poster that would prompt him to download a ring tone or video clip or look up show times.

Telecomms testing service provider 

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