France: Visa Europe to Launch Another microSD Trial in NFC Demo City
About 200 bank customers and employees will be able to tap their iPhones with a contactless attachment case and microSD cards to pay where Visa payWave is accepted. They will download an app supporting the service to their handsets. The case contains a contactless chip, not a full NFC chip. The trial will be held in Caen, in France’s Normandy region. The city is the site of a planned NFC phone trial, part of French demonstration projects by mobile operators, banks and other service providers and which are also supported by government funds. Caen was also the site of an earlier NFC phone trial.
The trial is one of several involving microSD cards and the iPhone. In fact, Visa Europe and Groupe BPCE (Banque Populaire and Caisse d’Epargne), launched a similar trial with more users of the iPhone and also some Android and BlackBerry smartphones in June in the French cities of Nice and Strasbourg. These cities, like Caen, are sites designated for expanded full NFC phone trials. The microSDs are generally considered bridge technologies, until the arrival of full NFC phones in greater numbers. But the microSDs do enable banks to bypass operators to offer mobile payment, so they could stick around longer. But firm issuing models are yet to be worked out for microSDs.