Russia: Large Telco and Transit Operator Test SIMs with Flexible Antennas
Russia’s largest mobile operator, MTS, is partnering with the Moscow Metro, one of the busiest subway systems in the world, to launch a trial of contactless-mobile transit ticketing. For the trial, Moscow Metro’s Mifare-based application, used by millions of Metro riders, will be stored on SIM cards connected to flexible antennas that wrap around the phone batteries. Users will be able to tap the phones to pay fares. The funding for the fares will come from the subscribers’ mobile phone accounts. A Moscow Metro spokeswoman told NFC Times the service would allow riders to avoid waits at ticket offices.
The trial will be one of the first tests of ticketing with the SIM-plus-flexible-antenna product. Banks and telcos are planning to test the same type of product for payment in Turkey, Singapore and some other places. A successful trial could result in the service being expanded in the massive Moscow Metro system and perhaps to other cities. And it could clear the way for mobile-transit ticketing in Russia using full NFC phones.
* 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: July 1, 2010