Amsterdam and Rio de Janeiro -- Rio de Janeiro will be the first city in Brazil to launch a pilot program enabling mobile NFC ticketing for public transportation. This innovative initiative is a pioneering partnership between RioCard Tecnologia da Informao, Gemalto, Motorola Mobility and the country's four leading mobile operators - Claro, Oi, Telefnica and TIM, supported by the GSMA. Two hundred users of buses, trains and ferries have been selected to collaborate with these companies in this three-month pilot, which is expected to conclude in December 2013.
For the first time in Brazil, smartphones will be used as mobile wallets with embedded NFC technology enabling secure payment for public transportation tickets. NFC allows safe contactless data exchange when two compatible devices are placed within a few inches of each other. Contactless technology was first adopted in Rio de Janeiro with RioCard transit card in 2003 and is now a part of the daily routine of millions of users. To pay for the transportation, the user needs to place the smartphone Motorola RAZR D3 -- which, as the first popular device offering NFC technology, has been exclusively selected for the pilot -- within a few inches of the RioCard reader terminal. An app allows users to easily check balances on the screen at any time or place. Soon, RioCard will also offer prepaid charges on the device itself. " It is a practical and fast system that brings freedom to the customer." says Homero Quintaes, Director of RioCard TI. Gemalto, the world leader in digital security, is providing its UpTeq multi-tenant NFC SIM cards with embedded Mifare4Mobile technology. The card protects the users' credentials enabling them to securely pay for their journey with nothing more than a tap of their handset. As technology needs evolve in the future, with the addition of Gemalto's Trusted Service Manager (TSM) platform the solution will be able to support the introduction of an extensive range of value-added services. " Transportation is emerging as one of the major applications for NFC technology, and our UpTeq multi-tenant NFC SIM card is fully scalable to host an extensive range of services now and in the future ," explains Damien Bullot, Telecom Director for Gemalto in Brazil. " As more and more banks, merchants and service providers introduce leading edge mobile payment technology, Gemalto's scalable solution can seamlessly accommodate the addition of new service providers as the marketplace evolves ." " The momentum we've seen in mobile NFC services continues to grow at a rapid pace ," said Pierre Combelles, Head of Mobile Commerce, GSMA. " This innovative pilot in Latin America shows mobile NFC digitizing ticketing, but this is just a starting point, as mobile commerce will drive demand for new services such as payment, vouchers, loyalty programs and access, among others. It's an exciting time in the region ."