4/4/2011 3:51:00 PM
Samsung and Visa to launch NFC Olympic phone
Official Olympics sponsors Samsung and Visa will release a Near Field Communication (NFC) Olympic mobile in time for the 2010 London Olympics.
The two have partnered to develop the handset in a bid to make contactless payments more popular and accessible in the UK. It follows the successful launch of the first commercial NFC phones in France last year.
The Olympic phone will be available to the general public for purchase through operators and distributors. Meanwhile a Visa-backed Sim card will allow consumers to wave their phones at any NFC reader to pay for food or Olympics memorabilia.
Samsung Electronics Europe president and CEO Seokpil Kim said: ‘Samsung is striving for long term change in the way we use mobile payments. In London next year, we regard the greatest show on earth as the perfect opportunity to showcase how this technology can make a positive difference to people’s lives.
‘This mobile payment device will be available in the UK initially, and we plan to expand the service to other countries in Europe and around the world where contactless payment facilities are available in the near future.’
Samsung and Visa are working closely with operators and financial institutions around the globe in order to make the phone available on more than one carrier and with more than one bank.
Visa Europe CEO Peter Ayliffe added: ‘We are not only breaking new ground for Olympic partnerships, we are committed to enabling consumers to connect with mobile and contactless payments technology for 2012 and beyond.
‘We look forward to working with financial institutions and mobile operators alongside Samsung to make this initiative a success.’
Samsung already offers NFC on the Nexus S and Bada smartphones.