Visa And Samsung To Partner Olympics Phone In UK

Visa And Samsung To Partner Olympics Phone In UK
As London gears up to host the 2012 Olympics, Visa Europe and Samsung have planned to take the enthusiasm to the consumer. They've announced their intention to launch a mobile phone featuring Olympics-themed content in commemoration of both the companies' sponsorship of the 2012 London Olympics. But the other great feature of these mobile phones would the ability for users to make mobile payments using NFC technology.

Visa Europe has already confirmed its discussions with operators in the UK. When launched, users will be able to make mobile payments through an application that is embedded on the device. The application will communicate with compatible tills through the NFC or other near-field communications.

Visa and Samsung plan to make the Olympics phone available through UK operators by the first half of 2012, equipped with the Visa application that will help users of the phone to check their transaction history. The application should enable users to pay for small as well as large purchases with PIN protection provided as an optional feature for obvious safety reasons, according to head of innovation of Visa Europe, Sandra Alzetta. Samsung though, hasn't announced yet which operating system the device will be running with. Options include Google's Android or the proprietary Bada operating system.

Alzetta claimed the Visa application is already being commercially used by banks in the EMEA region. Currently Visa Europe's UK staffs are conducting testing of the application with the help of iPhone handset covers that have been specifically equipped and NFC-enabled. Visa Europe is planning to work with banks in the UK so that its groundbreaking application enabling mobile payments will be launched commercially and begin to be used from the start of 2012.

One of the plans Visa has is to deploy MicroSD NFC-enabled cards to plug into legacy phones. This will enable Visa users to access the mobile payments service. Alzetta expressed the desire to see this plan implemented as widely as possible as she believed there will be many legacy phones around for quite some time that don't have the NFC chips within them.

Visa and Samsung have plans to offer the devices to be used by celebrities such as David Beckham throughout the Olympic. This is part of a promotional exercise that is sure to raise the profile of the product and keep everyone talking about it. These are certainly grand plans from Visa and Samsung who are ensuring that consumers too, through smart models such as the payment-application enabled Olympic phone, get to celebrate the fact that they are Worldwide Olympic Partners of the London 2012 Olympics.

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