Motorola Introduces NFC Phone for Enterprises

Motorola’s first commercial NFC phone cannot be bought in any mobile phone shop and isn’t sold by Motorola Mobility, the consumer smartphone maker.

The new MC75A HF mobile computer, from Motorola Solutions, the now separate company catering mainly to enterprises, is designed for corporations and government agencies. The device features "government grade security," a two-way radio and rugged design. The operating system is not the latest Windows Phone 7, but Windows Mobile 6.5. That is in addition to 3.5G mobile communications, GPS and a bar-code scanner.

Motorola Solutions, the new name for U.S.-based Motorola Inc., has sold more than 1 million of the MC70 and MC75A series mobile computers without NFC over the past couple of years. The company released an NFC version, the MC75A HF RFID Contactless mobile computer, last week in Europe for companies and other enterprises to test.

Motorola Mobility, which makes smartphones, TV set-top boxes and other devices for consumers, spun off from the company in January, and has remained quiet about any plans to incorporate NFC into its smartphones, including the popular Droid.

Motorola Solutions decided to add NFC functionality to the MC75A for enterprises that want to support transit ticketing, RFID tag reading, couponing and even debit or credit payment. The NFC chip supports all the major transit protocols, including Mifare, FeliCa and Calypso, said Motorola.

"Yes, in some transport and logistic (environments) you need NFC and RFID," a Motorola Solutions spokeswoman told NFC Times. She added that the phone is not ready out-of-the-box for payment and would have to add a "module." It’s unclear whether that refers to software or hardware. But The NFC chip likely has an embedded secure element.

One NFC industry observer, however, was unimpressed, noting that a new NFC phone for enterprises, especially an expensive one like the MC75A HF RFID Contactless, will do little to energize the NFC ecosystem, which is largely focused on the consumer market.

"It’s basically a souped-up PDA with a cellular modem," the observer told NFC Times.

HEADLINE NEWS

Insight: Apple Pay Launch of Virtual Closed-Loop Virtual Clipper Card Follows Emerging Trend

NFC Times Exclusive Insight – Although the trend for transit agencies to support open-loop fare payments, including with Apple Pay, Google Pay and other Pays wallets, has continued unabated–even accelerated–during the pandemic, another trend is taking shape: That of agencies adding virtual versions of their closed-loop fare cards into the Pays wallets.

First Transit Agency to Sell Tickets Through Uber App Sees Relatively Few Takers Two Years on

Apr 21 2021

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The Regional Transportation District of Denver was the first transit agency to work with Uber to sell its bus and light rail tickets through the Uber app in the spring of 2019. RTD later that year expanded the service to trip-planning app Transit and then last fall to the app for another ride-hailing service, Lyft.

Sydney to Test Multimodal Payments Involving Private Mobility Providers Using Digital Closed-Loop Card

NFC Times Exclusive Insight – A trial to be held later this year in Australia’s largest city, Sydney, if it proves successful, could offer one example for how agencies can encourage customers to take multimodal transport combining public and private operators. The economics behind the New South Wales government’s trial offer are unclear, however.

Rome Transit Operator: Covid Accelerates Demand for Contactless Payments but Customer Habits Hard to Change

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The CIO of Italy’s largest public transit operator, ATAC SpA, said the Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated demand for open-loop contactless and mobile payments, but added that old habits are hard to break for customers and use of cash and paper tickets are still popular.

Dubai Transit Authority Plans to Launch Its Closed-Loop Card in More NFC Wallets

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority, or RTA, which in December first launched mobile fare payments with a digital version of its closed-loop card in Huawei smartphones, says it plans to expand the service to other OEMs, including Apple and Samsung.

Case Study: Transit Agency in Portugal Combined NFC with BLE for Mobile Ticketing; Faced Challenges

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The agency that runs ticketing for 19 public bus, tram and train operators serving Porto, Portugal’s second largest city, says it has had success–and faced several challenges–with the rollout of its Anda mobile-ticketing app.

OMNY Hits New Usage Milestone as Open-Loop Payments Rollout Continues

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – New York’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority, or MTA, says it continues to see steady growth of its open-loop fare payments service, OMNY, announcing 50 million taps by customers using NFC wallets and bank cards to ride the massive New York City Subway and the city’s buses.

In-Depth: Contactless Open-Loop Pilot in Spain First Project from Vendor Partnership

Mar 11 2021

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Bilbobus, which operates bus service for the city of Bilbao, in northern Spain’s Basque region, says it launched its recent trial of con

Moscow Metro Plans Rollout of ‘Face Pay’ Technology for Fare Collection

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The Moscow Metro plans to roll out facial-recognition technology at every station by the end of 2021 to enable customers to pay fares, officials say. The project, while delayed, would be the largest of its kind globally.

Stockholm Transit Agency Launches Open-Loop Fare Payments for Multimodal Rides

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Stockholm Public Transport, or SL, the city-owned company that oversees major public transport in the city, is the latest agency in Europe to launch open-loop fare collection, offering multimodal rides with a tap of a contactless EMV bank card or NFC device.

Case Study: Amsterdam Transit Operator Seeks to Go Nearly 100% Digital for Ticketing to Cut Costs and Enhance Service

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – GVB, Amsterdam’s largest public transit operator, says it seeks to replace an aging closed-loop fare card system and go to open-loop and other digital tokens with the planned rollout of its new account-based ticketing system.

Google Announces Plans to Enable Public Transit Ticketing in Maps App along with Rollout of Parking Fare Payments

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Google has announced plans to launch public transit ticketing for more than 80 cities globally in coming weeks from its trip-planning Maps app and also to enable users to buy virtual closed-loop fare cards–starting with the Clipper card in the San Francisco Bay Area–directly from the app. That’s in addition to enabling payments for parking in more than 400 U.S. cities.