China: Branch of China Mobile Likely To Shun RF-SIM for Project

 

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HangzhouChina
Scope: 
Trial
Status: 
Planned
Launch: 
Jun 2010
Main Application: 
Payment
Mobile Operator: 
China Mobile (Hangzhou)
Service Provider (application): 
Hangzhou Citizen Card Co. and Hangzhou City 360° Card Co. (local Mifare-based transit payment application)
Merchants: 
Buses, taxis, parking facilities, some restaurants
Users: 
Fewer than 100,000
NFC Handsets: 
N/A
TSM*: 
N/A
Secure Element: 
SIM
Other Vendors: 
Watchdata (SIMpass) (expected)

Users of Hangzhou’s citizen card will be able to use their phones to ride buses and taxis, pay parking fares and make some food and beverage purchases, as well as buying movie and lottery tickets, reportedly. Subscribers will also be able to reload the transit-payment purse over the air. A second phase would likely enable subscribers to use their phones to rent bicycles and pay bills.

NFC Times Take: 

The branch of China’s giant mobile operator is expected to use underlying contactless technology for the project complying with international standards–not the proprietary RF-SIM technology China Mobile has been rolling out in Shanghai, 200 kilometers to the northeast and in several other cities as part of its own payment scheme. RF-SIMs operate at the 2.4-GHz frequency and so are not compatible with standard payment and ticketing terminals. As sources have told NFC Times, China Mobile is pulling back from its all-out RF-SIM push and plans to also support contactless-mobile payment complying with standard 13.56-MHz technology, including NFC. The Hangzhou mobile citizen card project might be the first project demonstrating that shift in strategy. The China Mobile branch will likely issue SIM cards with flexible antennas that operate at 13.56 MHz, at least at first.

 

 

 

* 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.

 

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