Telefónica Digital and Research In Motion have teamed up to run a pilot program of the Telefónica Wallet for BlackBerry smartphones.
In collaboration with local banks and retailers, Telefónica will roll out the Telefónica Wallet for BlackBerry to 350 employees at its Distrito Telefónica headquarters in Madrid, Spain and could be extended to subsidiary companies such as the UK’s O2.
Telefónica COO Julio Linares said: ‘We have chosen the BlackBerry solution for this pilot because of the security that the platform brings. RIM’s participation has been key for this pilot project, and we are now planning to extend the project to more and more Telefónica employees around the world.’
Those taking part in the trial will be able to make payments in a simple, easy, safe and convenient way by simply tapping their NFC-enabled BlackBerry smartphone against a reader.
Employees that are part of the NFC pilot project will also be able use their BlackBerry smartphone (in lieu of a security card) to gain physical access to the Telefónica headquarters office.
The Telefónica Wallet for BlackBerry currently supports the following NFC-enabled smartphones: BlackBerry Bold 9900, BlackBerry Curve 9360 and BlackBerry Curve 9380, all of which run the new BlackBerry 7 operating system.
Telefónica Digital chairman and CEO Matthew Key said: ‘We are getting ever closer to the point where our customers will be able to take the contents of their wallets and put them on their mobiles. Trials such as this are important to ensuring a great customer experience and we look forward to seeing the launch of commercial wallet services in several markets next year.’
RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie added: ‘RIM is committed to supporting the advancement of NFC and its many applications in the market. We have a strong partnership with Telefónica Group and we are very proud to participate in this important pilot, which allows people to use their BlackBerry smartphone in place of separate physical cards for mobile payments and building access.’