ABI Study: MicroSD with NFC will target handsets

The disappointing selection of NFC-enabled handsets, which many believe has held back the uptake of mobile contactless payments, could be a thing of the past. microSD cards with embedded NFC are being developed and they will plug into the increasing array of handsets becoming available with microSD slots.

According to a new study from ABI Research, this fresh approach could see NFC bypassing handset vendors and mobile operators as gatekeepers over the wealth of contactless applications expected to appear over the next 12 months.

"Mobile handsets remain the key market for NFC but increasingly the potential of the technology is driving NFC into other devices and form factors," said ABI M2M analyst Jonathan Collins. "The potential to offer NFC to handsets with microSD slots is helping to change the mobile handset landscape for many NFC vendors and supporters."

Evidence that the financial service industry is keen to push ahead with NFC-based services is seen from the announcement that Visa has partnered with DeviceFidelity to market an iPhone casing that supports an SD card enabled with NFC.

ABI also believes that the emergence of active and passive contactless stickers that will provide handset owners with limited access to mobile contactless payment services could provoke operators to push forward with fully integrated NFC devices.

ABI claims that last year more NFC ICs shipped for use in computers and peripherals than for handsets.

For more on this story:
- read EE Times

Related stories:
T-Mobile to trial NFC services using SIM for secure storage
Rumour mill: Barclaycard and Orange scheme NFC launch
Forecast: One in six users to own NFC-enabled phones by 2014
Nokia makes play for NFC leadership

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