NETS and Singtel to Launch Next Generation Mobile Payment Applications
New Trial Service to Feature Asia’s First NFC Stored Value Pursewith Over-The-Air Capabilities
Singapore, 4 September 2007 – Singapore’s leading electronic payments
provider, NETS, has teamed up with Asia’s leading communications provider,
Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. (Singtel), to announce the republic’s first
Near Field Communication (NFC) trials, which includes a stored value wallet with
Over-The-Air (OTA) capabilities. This covers wireless downloads and top-ups of
stored value to NFC phones, making the trial a first in Asia.
This trial, conducted with wireless technology (through OTA capabilities), will
make use of mobile phone technologies and applications to further improve user
convenience through the use of their mobile wallets. This initiative will speed up
Singapore’s move towards a cashless society.
Under the payment solution being planned, Singtel users will need to download
a mNETS application, which will allow them to store and top up value on the
mNETS payment application in their phones any time. Users will then be able to
make payments using NETS FlashPay by flashing their Singtel mobile phones at
NETS contactless terminals islandwide.
NFC is a combination of identification and wireless technologies that enable an
NFC device to “talk” to another NFC or NFC-compatible device. NFC is based
on an industry and ISO standard by the NFC Forum comprising major phone
manufacturers. It is compatible with NETS retail terminal infrastructure.
“The NFC trial by NETS and Singtel will blend NETS’ leadership in cashless
payments with Singtel’s quality network and knowledge of the mobile phone
technologies. Users no longer need to open their physical wallets to make
purchases of small items. We believe that this technological platform is one of
NETS’ way of making our users’ life great,” said NETS CEO Poh Mui Hoon.
Singtel’s Executive Vice President of Consumer Business and CEO of Singtel
Mobile, Mr Quek Peck Leng said, “We are excited to introduce our mobile wallet
concept and we are pleased to work with like-minded strategic partners like
NETS on mNETS services. NFC technology on a mobile device brings a total
new dimension to how mobile customers use their handsets and will improve
customer experience at point of sale."
“Singtel plays a vital role in the mobile NFC value chain by providing and
enabling a leading edge infrastructure that is both trusted and reliable. Our
technology expertise has helped to ensure the smooth convergence of this
nascent NFC technology with the mobile environment."
Once the public trials commence later this year, Singtel users can download
mNETS via GPRS and follow up with the topping up of their mNETS payment
application. The mNETS wallet allows the user to store value up to S$500.
Topping up of the mNETS wallet will be equally convenient. Singtel users can
make use of the existing wireless infrastructure to top up their mNETS wallet.
Users can top up to S$40 per phone, per day, using their pre-registered credit
cards from DBS, OCBC or UOB during the trials.
At the point of purchase, users can then make payments using NETS FlashPay
by simply flashing their mobile phones at NETS contactless terminals.
NETS’ CEO, Ms Poh added, “The NFC will be the next big thing for electronic
payments. We anticipate that with the alliance with Singtel, we will be looking at
three out of ten mobile phones being NFC-compatible in 2012 and users can use
mNETS services to make contactless payments.”
Mr Quek added, “Our vision is to enable as many applications as possible onto
the mobile wallet and we are working towards implementing mobile NFC for
security card access, loyalty cards, redemption of mobile or merchant coupons
and storing of contact details, for instance.”
One other application under mNETS will be the mNETS Coupons, an electronic
coupon that can be downloaded with a NFC-enabled phone to provide the
Singtel user with discounts and freebies. A simple flash of NFC enabled mobiles
on mNETS Posters or billboards will download the mNETS Coupon with the
promotion. There will be over 400 terminals at participating merchants, including
Cheers and FairPrice Xpress, K Box, Cathay Cineplexes and Yoshinoya
mNETS Coupons will open up new business and marketing opportunities for
NETS and Singtel merchants.
The mobile payment initiative is part of NETS’ and Singtel’s vision of bringing
mobile payments to Singaporeans. NETS is studying this initiative under its
broader mNETS strategy which will make mobile payments pervasive across the
“OCBC Bank is pleased to be part of this mNETS initiative. This move by NETS
is commendable as it can truly make cashless payments hassle-free for
consumers. We certainly see mNETS as a natural conduit to complement our
efforts in providing convenient alternatives in mobile payment and banking for our
customers to match their increasingly mobile lifestyles," said Mr Patrick Chew,
Head of Delivery, OCBC Bank.
Mr Eddie Khoo, Executive Vice President and Global Head of UOB Personal
Financial Services said: "We are pleased to be NETS' partner for this trial. We
are also especially excited over the prospect to offer cardmembers yet another
means for them to tap on a credit card to facilitate transactions. This trial certainly
marks another milestone for UOB. It reinvents the way a credit card can be used
and reflects the dynamism of a UOB credit card."
NETS aims to enable the mNETS payments for use in Transit come 2010.
NETS and Singtel, plan to start a staff trial in September and a public trial in the
fourth quarter of 2007. The NFC technology and OTA applications used in this
service are developed by ViVOtech Inc. USA.