Monday, June 1, 2009

PingPing and Alcatel-Lucent Partner on Contactless Payments

Alcatel-Lucent's "touchatag" joint venture is working with PingPing, an independent brand by Belgacom for mobile & micro payments, to create an open model to encourage the development of new applications for contactless cards and mobile payment technology.

Contactless applications are the next step in the evolution of the "electronic wallet." Among other things, this technology makes it possible to pay for a service, such as a theater ticket or gas purchase, by simply waving a contactless card or mobile phone in front of the register or even a poster.

The partnership combines PingPing's payment system for mobile phones and touchatag's contactless services, such as interactive advertising, loyalty programs and coupon services. By the fall of this year, Belgian consumers will be able to use one contactless card or sticker to initiate a variety of applications, as opposed to numerous cards currently required. Both parties will also support Near Field Communication (NFC) phones; these are devices that have a contactless reader and scanner built-in, as alternatives to contactless cards.

PingPing and touchatag will work together to create an accreditation program that will allow other technology suppliers, operators and application developers to develop new programs and uses for the technology.