TAIPEI, Taiwan – Taiwan’s largest telco, Chunghwa Telecom, Wednesday announced the launch of its long-planned NFC commercial service, enabling MasterCard PayPass credit cards from four banks, along with one of the first mobile NFC services supporting a Mifare transit purse, EasyCard.
But problems implementing the Mifare-based application on NFC phones are limiting the number of handset models the telco will be able to offer at launch, and the high cost of NFC SIMs is also expected to curtail initial availability of SIMs for customers, NFC Times has learned.
As NFC Times reported earlier this week, the small commercial launch by Chunghwa Telecom, or CHT, is a first for the Taiwanese market, which is considered a bellwether for prospects for NFC mobile payments in other small countries. Taiwan boasts one of the highest rates of smartphone use in Asia and has a strong contactless infrastructure, along with a long record of NFC trials. But its NFC ecosystem is fragmented and revenue models for various players are uncertain.