Samsung partners with FeliCa for Japanese NFC solutions, unveils 2012 Olympics' mobile payment app with Visa

Across the globe today, Samsung is bringing a number of pushes to broaden NFC adoption. On the island of Japan, the company's sealed a partnership with FeliCa Networks to implement its NFC-Secure Application Module chips in its mobile devices. Notably, the solution is ensures compatibility between Japan's long established Osaifu-Keitai contactless payment services and the newer breed of NFC Types A and B which normally don't play nice together. The chips are touted has having "advanced security" to keep your funds in check, and are expect to hit "commercial deployment" set for 2013. Flying over to London, Samsung and Visa have unveiled the official NFC payment app for the 2012 Olympics, in their continued preparation for the event. Despite the unveil, the application (based on Visa's PayWave) will officially debut for display at Mobile World Congress next week. This comes nearly ten months after the duo announced their plans to further establish NFC-based payment options for London and the event itself. Hit up the two press releases after the break for the full details on the announcements.

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Visa and Samsung Reveal Mobile Payments Application for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

Latest step forward in bringing mobile payments to London 2012 Olympic Games
Mobile World Congress 2012

LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Visa (NYSE: V) and Samsung today revealed the official mobile payments application of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Samsung and Visa will debut the mobile payment application at Mobile World Congress, Barcelona, Spain from February 27th to March 1st. The application will be demonstrated at Visa stand (Hall 1, Stand 1B19) and Samsung stand (Hall 8, Stand 8B169). This marks the first step to realising the partnership between the two Olympic and Paralympic Games sponsors to bring mobile contactless payments to London as part of their support of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

"We are also working with a number of partners to put live mobile payment technology into consumer hands. We've recently announced the certification of a number of major manufacturer handsets for NFC payments, which brings mainstream commercial mobile payments a step closer to reality."

The application is based on Visa's payWave technology that enables contactless payments at the Point of Sale. To make payments, customers simply hold the phone in front of a contactless reader at the point of purchase. Purchases above 15 pounds require a passcode. The application also lets customers check their transaction history and view their up to date account balance. Backed by the multi-layered security and reliability of Visa's processing platform, mobile contactless payments are protected by the same standard terms and conditions that apply to Visa cards.

"London 2012 is a unique opportunity to show the future of payments coming to life and leave a lasting legacy post-2012. The new mobile payment application is central to this showcase," said Sandra Alzetta, Head of Innovation at Visa Europe. "We are also working with a number of partners to put live mobile payment technology into consumer hands. We've recently announced the certification of a number of major manufacturer handsets for NFC payments, which brings mainstream commercial mobile payments a step closer to reality."

"Samsung is extremely thrilled to work with Visa to launch mobile payment services for the London 2012 Olympic Games. We believe that this showcase will motivate people to experience and adopt easy and safe payment through mobile devices. As a long-time Olympic partner and a mobile technology leader, Samsung is fully committed to providing our customers with reliable and convenient mobile experiences during the Olympic Games through our partnership with Visa," said DJ Lee, executive vice president and head of Sales and Marketing team of Samsung's Mobile Communications Business.

As a Worldwide Sponsor of the Olympic Games for more than 25 years and the Paralympic Games since 2002, Visa implements and manages the entire payment system infrastructure and network throughout all Games' venues. For London 2012, there will be more than 3,000 contactless terminals installed across the Olympic and Paralympic venues showcasing prepaid, contactless payments, mobile technologies, and other innovations.

Samsung and FeliCa Networks Partner on Mobile NFC Solution

SEOUL, Korea and TOKYO, Japan- February 24, 2012- (Virtual Press Office) – Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., a world leader in advanced semiconductor solutions, and FeliCa Networks, Inc., a leading technology and solution provider of NFC service platform, today announced a partnership to support the full-fledged adoption of near field communication (NFC)-based mobile wallet in Japan. As a strategic partner, Samsung will develop NFC compatible FeliCa™ IC solutions for reliable and efficient wallet function on mobile devices. The Samsung/FeliCa Networks NFC-SAM (Secure Application Module) chips will offer consumers an enhanced secure mobile wallet through a variety of applications including prepaid money, credit cards and transportation tickets among others.

"We are pleased to work with FeliCa Networks to provide NFC-SAM IC solution based on our deep expertise in advanced RF sensitivity and data encryption technologies," said Taehoon Kim, vice president of System LSI sales & marketing, Device Solutions, Samsung Electronics. "The collaborative efforts combining FeliCa Networks' excellent operation of the FeliCa platform and Samsung's world-class semiconductor design and process technology will generate greater value for the mobile payment market."

"We are delighted to collaborate with Samsung, a leading semiconductor company, to introduce new NFC-SAM IC solution based on our expertise and experience in development of mobile contactless technology and platform operation since 2004," said Hirotaka Sugiyama, President of FeliCa Networks. "Integration of both technologies will contribute to further development of mobile NFC business across the globe in the near future. We intend to introduce a variety of NFC solutions in addition to NFC-SAM IC chips to contribute to bringing up consumers' convenience in the world."

Samsung's contribution to the partnership will include both the NFC controller complying with international standard ISO/IEC 14443/18092 (Type A/B and FeliCa™) and the FeliCa™ SAM chip with advanced security capabilities. FeliCa Networks will contribute by providing the key technologies to Samsung. The technologies enable interoperability in the world's largest mobile contactless infrastructure established in Japan, which consists of FeliCa™ (NFC-F) readers and Osaifu-Keitai® (mobile wallet) phones. By combining both contributions, the NFC-SAM chips will not only have higher capabilities but also full interoperability with existing infrastructures and services delivered on Osaifu-Keitai®. The NFC controller can also be applied to NFC readers and services around the world.

The commercial deployment of the new NFC-SAM chips is targeted for 2013.