Blackberry maker Research In Motion (RIM) today (26 October) announced that its BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Curve 9360 smartphones have become the first Sim-based NFC smartphones to be certified by MasterCard Worldwide as PayPass-approved devices.
The manufacturer will now be able to turn its new smartphones into mobile wallets and take full advantage of the NFC payments services currently available on the Samsung Wave 578 with Orange and Barclaycard.
RIM said its smartphones were granted the certification after they met the functionality, interoperability and security requirements set by MasterCard.
The certification of the Bold 9900 and Curve 9360 handsets will enable any MasterCard PayPass-issuing bank globally to deploy MasterCard PayPass-enabled accounts to the Sim card of these smartphones.
RIM handheld software product management VP Andrew Bocking said: ‘NFC technology is making smartphones even smarter and the MasterCard certification is a significant step forward in helping transform the way we use mobile devices for payments. We are working proactively with our carrier partners, banks, retailers and other industry players and we are excited to push the boundaries of how NFC can enable new mobile experiences for BlackBerry smartphone users around the world.’
MasterCard Worldwide mobile group executive Mung Ki Woo said: ‘MasterCard is proud to be the first to certify these popular BlackBerry smartphones for mobile payments, and offer consumers another simple, easy, safe and convenient way to pay. In card payments, MasterCard has long been a leader in the testing and certification of products – for the benefit of customers, issuers, merchants and acquirers.
We are delighted to extend this leadership role into the mobile payments arena and applaud RIM’s efforts to usher in the next phase of NFC adoption by delivering compliant devices to the market
‘The availability of NFC on popular BlackBerry smartphones is an important milestone for the mobile contactless payments business.’
France Telecom-Orange, which already offers a similar platform through Barclaycard, has been one of the first carriers to give the BlackBerrys its support.
France Telecom and Orange director of contactless services Vincent Barnaud said: ‘We are happy to offer the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and BlackBerry Curve 9360 as part of the Orange range of mobile NFC devices. We are committed to actively marketing NFC devices, and these new smartphones will help accelerate the adoption of mobile NFC services secured by an Orange Sim, including mobile payments.
‘We have a strong partnership with RIM, and look forward to working together on more NFC initiatives in the future.’