UAE: Plans Call For largest Telco and Bank to Trial NFC
The largest mobile operator and largest bank, in terms of assets, in the Gulf plan to jointly offer contactless mobile credit using—according to the bank’s announcement--NFC phones from Nokia and Samsung. But the parties were still waiting for new NFC phones as of early 2010 and the Nokia phone it was probably counting on, the 6216, has been canceled by the handset maker. They might use the Samsung S5230, planned for other trials in France, Spain and perhaps Germany. In addition, there are not many merchant locations yet accepting contactless bank payment in Dubai or throughout the UAE. One source placed it at no more than 450 locations in January 2010. Such UAE banks as National Bank of Abu Dhabi and HSBC (debit) were to be issuing cards. The NFC trial project also includes mobile couponing.
Telco Etisalat said it hopes to offer a new NFC phone model from Samsung, in addition to a Nokia phone. It is unclear when project organizers will be able to offer NFC services on a commercial basis. But Dubai could be one of the first places where NFC gets rolled out.
* 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.