Austrian Telco to End Paybox NFC Project; Had Sought to Establish New Payment Brand

Nov 19 2012

Austrian mobile operator A1 has pulled the plug on its plans to introduce its own payment brand at the physical point of sale, disclosing it would end an eight-month “trial” of the service by the end of the year.

The telco, which is one of the few operators worldwide to operate its own bank, announced the move last April, with plans to launch its “paybox NFC” application in a trial with contactless stickers to be followed by a commercial launch in the summer. The operator would load the paybox application onto SIM cards in NFC phones.

In shunning major Austrian banks and the established card schemes, Visa Europe and MasterCard Worldwide, A1 believed it could expand its paybox online payment and mobile parking fare-collection service to the physical point of sale. By doing so, it could earn transaction fees from merchants.

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