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O2 to launch NFC mobile wallets this year

Contactless payments en route to O2
Contactless payments en route to O2

O2 has revealed its plans to launch a mobile wallet service using NFC technology in the second half of 2011.

The network operator has trailed NFC payment services using a Nokia handset, but no doubt hopes to take advantage of the NFC capabilities of the latest Android smartphones like the Google Nexus S, as well as its rumoured inclusion of a chip in the iPhone 5.

London 2012

O2 has said that it will apply for an e-money operating licence from the FSA, which will allow the network to offer money transfers between customers, as well as contactless payments at 60,000 venues around the UK.

The e-money operating licence will allow users to 'bank' money with the network, which can then be spent or transferred using the NFC chip.

The network operator is keen to get the mobile payments service up and running before the onslaught of the 2012 Olympics hits London next year.

The news comes hot on the heels of Everything Everywhere's announcement that it plans to roll out NFC-enabled SIM cards in Q2 2011 in partnership with Barclaycard.

Via Mobile News