Vodafone launches NFC mobile wallet in Europe

Vodafone is rolling out its Near Feld Communications-based mobile wallet service in Europe, and said this is the first European mobile payment service to be based on the open-standard GlobalPayment platform.

Vodafone is launching its NFC-based mobile Wallet service across Europe.

The Vodafone SmartPass service is the first application designed for Vodafone Wallet and has been developed in partnership with Visa. Vodafone SmartPass can be funded when needed and enables customers to pay for goods with their smartphone at any Visa contactless payment terminal in retailers around the world, including more than 1.2 million in Europe, Vodafone added.

Vodafone Wallet and Vodafone SmartPass will launch in Spain today, Germany in mid-December, and the Netherlands, the UK and Italy in spring of 2014. Vodafone said it is also working with major European banks to integrate their card portfolios into the wallet and will announce further details in due course.

Vodafone joins other operators by launching mobile wallet services in Europe. For example in the UK, EE offers the Cash on Tap service and Orange and Barclaycard launched the UK's first NFC-based payment service with Quick Tap. In France, Orange France is teaming up with Visa Europe to launch a prepaid NFC service called Orange Cash in 2014.

Vodafone, O2 UK and EE are also the co-founders of Weve, a company working on setting up unified platform for NFC mobile phone payments in the UK. Weve will launch its platform, which will feature discounts, automated loyalty schemes and the ability to pay bills, during 2014.

The GlobalPlatform standard is a cross industry, non-profit association with financial services, manufacturers and telecommunications companies among its members. It identifies, develops and publishes specifications that promote the secure and interoperable deployment and management of multiple applications on secure chip technology.

For more:
- see this Vodafone release

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