Canada: Largest Bank, RBC, and major Telco Bell Plan NFC Commercial Launch
Canada’s largest bank and one of its three major mobile operators announced plans in May to commercially launch NFC payments by the end of the year, following a trial this summer. The Royal Bank of Canada, or RBC, and Bell Mobility plan to launch the SIM-based NFC payments service with debit and credit cards on up to five BlackBerry NFC phones and a range of Android devices from Samsung, Sony, HTC, LG Electronics and others. RBC said NFC will be the “first piece of a broad RBC mobile-commerce solution rolling out to clients this year,” including nonpayment services. The mobile-payments service will be part of the bank’s existing mobile-banking app and will work with the bank’s peer-to-peer payments service, which will enable RBC customers to send money to any individual or business in Canada.
The announcement of the rollout plans by RBC and Bell follows the launch last November of the first NFC commercial service in Canada, by the country’s largest mobile operator, Rogers Wireless, and another of its major banks, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, or CIBC, using older BlackBerry phones. In March, Rogers announced it would expand its suretap NFC payments service to Android smartphones, including the Samsung Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II, along with new BlackBerry 10 devices. Neither this partnership nor the pairing between Rogers and CIBC is exclusive, and Canada’s three major telcos and likely all of its five major banks plan to launch with other counterparts later. Canada, which has among the highest penetration rates of contactless point-of-sale terminals and use of contactless bank cards worldwide, is expected to become a hotspot NFC.
* Trusted Service Manager: Defined loosely to include companies or other organizations securely distributing, provisioning and managing applications, generally over the air, on secure elements in NFC mobile phones; or licensing their platforms for this purpose. N/A: Not available or not applicable.
Last update: May 2013