Thursday, December 15, 2005

Near Field Communications Tested in Atlanta

Electronic News reports that Chase, Cingular Wireless, Nokia, Philips, Visa USA and ViVOtech, along with Atlanta Spirit, parent company of the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks, NHL’s Atlanta Thrashers and Philips Arena, will all collaborate on the "first large-scale trial of near field communication (NFC) technology in North America." The trial will "allow contactless payments, mobile content and premium arena services at Philips Arena in Atlanta through short range NFC wireless technology."

According to the article, "during the trial, Atlanta Thrashers and Hawks season ticket holders with Chase-issued Visa credit accounts and Cingular Wireless accounts can make contactless payments at concession stands and access mobile content from numerous locations throughout the arena. Users can purchase items by simply holding their Nokia 3220 mobile phones equipped with Philips' NFC semiconductor chips and ViVOtech software near a secure terminal."

Erik Michielsen at ABI Research said, "By 2010, we expect that over 50 percent of all mobile handsets will incorporate near field communication chips to enable short-range, easy and secure transactions. The NFC implementation at Philips Arena demonstrates NFC stakeholders, including chipmakers, card issuers, device makers, mobile carriers, and content providers, are progressively more willing to collaborate on NFC solution development. This type of co-development is essential to NFC market growth and maturation.”

No mention of how many season-ticket holders will participate and get set up with:

  1. Chase Visa cards
  2. Cingular accounts
  3. and a tricked out Nokia 3220
Seems like a lot of things need to fall in place and get standardized before NFC takes off...