Telecom, Westpac, Auckland Transport trialling mobile wallets

Trial to begin in May will see staff using NFC technology to make payments in Auckland

Telecom, Auckland Transport, and Westpac will be trialling a mobile wallet system in Auckland, which is expected to start in May.

The project is a partnership with digital security company Gemalto, defence company Thales, and payment solutions company Paymark.

Around 30 staff from the six organisations are involved in the trial. They will use near-field communication (NFC) technology in mobile phones to make “tap-and-go” purchases at a small range of Auckland businesses, including paying for fares on public transport.

Telecom CEO Paul Reynolds says New Zealanders view their phones as central to their lives, so the addition of payment services is a natural extension.

“As we have seen with developments in mobile phone technology, people quite rightly expect their phones to offer more versatility and functionality and simplify their lifestyles,” says Reynolds.

Earlier this month Telecom, Vodafone, and 2degrees announced a joint venture with Paymark to allow New Zealanders to make payments, earn loyalty points, and access public transport using a common trusted service manager (TSM).

For this trial Gemalto will provide the NFC technology required to operate the system, including its TSM platform.

“Our goal is to provide an open, interoperable and neutral NFC ecosystem for operators, banks, service providers and merchants,” says Tan Teck Lee, CIO of Gemalto Asia Pacific.

Last year, Vodafone and BNZ trialled its own mobile wallet, claiming it to be the first use of the technology in New Zealand.

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