Deutsche Telekom Chooses G&D for Development of NFC-enabled SIMs

Germany-based Giesecke & Devrient has announced it has won a contract from Deutsche Telekom to develop NFC-enabled SIM cards for the telco group's NFC wallet rollouts.

The contract is for development work, not for actual NFC-enabled SIM cards, but G&D is a major supplier of conventional SIMs for the Germany-based telco group, so orders of NFC-enabled SIMs are likely. 

“We work closely together with Deutsche Telekom to roll out NFC services internationally,” a G&D spokesman told NFC Times. “The first run is a development partnership, G&D is developing this Deutsche Telekom SIM card. Next turn is ordering of SIM cards.”

He declined to release the amount of the development contract or when the work is scheduled to be completed.

Deutsche Telekom announced earlier this year it plans to launch NFC services as part of mobile wallets in its home base of Germany along with its branch T-Mobile operator in Poland before the end of the year. It plans NFC launches next year with its T-Mobile branches in the Netherlands and Czech Republic. All the launches call for secure applications to be stored on SIM cards the group telcos issue. They would work in NFC phones that support a standard single-wire protocol connection to the SIM.

But there will also likely be customized parts of the wallet and its user interface stored on the SIM cards. This could be in the form of a Smart Card Web Server application running on the SIMs the operators issue. 

Banks in Poland in particular are gearing up to launch NFC services later this year, said sources, and T-Mobile Poland is expected to be among the first telcos to introduce commercial NFC services in that country.

In Germany, Deutsche Telekom is considering launching its own payment scheme with other mobile operators. Transit ticketing is also expected to be an application included in any Deutsche Telekom mobile wallet in Germany.

The telco group, one of the largest in Europe, also has had a tender request out to hire a trusted service manager for the mobile-wallet program at the four operators. The TSM would handle downloads and management of applications on SIM cards the telcos issue. Giesecke & Devrient’s TSM unit, formerly called Venyon, was a finalist for this contract, though sources said it probably has been awarded to France-based Gemalto. Deutsche Telekom could not be reached for comment to confirm the TSM contract award.

 

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