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Isis lists smartphone makers for NFC payments push

Wed, 09/28/2011 - 8:05am
Maisie Ramsay, Wireless Week

Isis says six top smartphone manufacturers will manufacture smartphones compatible with its NFC-based mobile payments service.

HTC, LG, Motorola Mobility, Research In Motion, Samsung Mobile and Sony Ericsson will come out with NFC devices that work with the service. Isis is also working with DeviceFidelity to find a way to retrofit non-NFC devices with the capability.

RIM will add the technology to "various models" in its upcoming line of BlackBerry 7 smartphones, said company software executive Andrew Bocking.

"Working together with the device makers and our founding mobile carriers, Isis can provide the consumer choice and scale necessary for widespread adoption of mobile commerce," Isis CTO Scott Mulloy said.

However, it is not clear when the devices will come to market. Neither Bocking nor the other smartphone manufacturers listed in the announcement named specific models for the service, and availability was also left undisclosed. Isis does not plan to begin trials of its mobile payments service until 2012.

Isis is a joint venture between AT&T, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless. The company made its debut last November with the plan to build its own mobile payments network, but later decided to use existing payment networks from American Express, MasterCard, Discover and Visa after financial reform legislation made its initial plans impracticable.

Salt Lake City, Utah, and Austin, Texas, are slated to be the first markets for the mobile payments service when it launches in the first half of next year.

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