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Mobile operators collaborate to get NFC services to market by 2012

22 February 2012

Mobile operators are collaborating to see the release of near-field (NFC) commercial services into the market by 2012, according to mobile communications body GSMA.

Google, Orange and Vodafone are among the pledging their commitment to the technology.

NFC allows users to make payments on their smartphones, and is anticipated to be used in combination with advertising and location-based services.

"NFC is known for its role in enabling mobile payments, but its applications go far beyond that," said Franco Bernabè, chairman of GSMA and CEO at Telecom Italia.

"NFC will facilitate a wide range of interesting services and applications for consumers, such as mobile ticketing, mobile coupon, the exchange of information and content, control access to cars, homes, hotels, offices, car parks and much more."

To drive adoption and popularity, GSMA said it will work with mobile operators to develop the necessary certification and testing standards to ensure global interoperability of NFC services.

It said that interoperability is critical to the widespread adoption of the technology.

"As we have seen, the adoption of different approaches to NFC will only serve to fragment the market," continued Bearable. "By uniting around a single standardized approach, our industry will develop the compelling services that customers demand."

At Mobile World Congress last week, Google CEO Eric Schmidt said NFC would "revolutionise payments when tied to advertising and location".

Industry analyst Frost and Sullivan predicts the total payment value for NFC globally will reach more than €110bn (£93bn) in 2015.


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