Visa Europe and telecoms group Orange have announced a strategic partnership, reflecting the companies’ shared ambition to accelerate awareness and everyday usage of mobile contactless payment in France.
They added that the partnership aims to raise awareness of the benefits of near field communication (NFC) for customers in an increasingly favourable environment for mobile payments. The number of contactless payment terminals used by French merchants has increased by more than 50% over the past six months to reach 200,000 active terminals in France today, which has been complimented by the mass deployment of NFC mobile phones in France.
Orange is offering customers equipped with NFC compatible mobiles the opportunity to pay retailers with Orange Cash, a mobile prepayment solution and the first of its kind in France that uses contactless Visa technology pre-loaded on all Orange NFC subscriber identity module (SIM) cards. The service is based on a solution designed and managed in collaboration with the Wirecard Group and Wirecard Card Solutions, member of Visa Europe.
Orange customers will be able to download the Orange Cash app from the apps store and top up their prepaid Orange Cash account with the amount they choose in just a few clicks using their bank card. To pay, they will just need to place their mobile on an NFC payment terminal at a retailer’s premises. For all payments of over €20, users will be asked for a secret code they will have chosen, which is different from their bank card personal identification number (PIN) code.
Orange Cash will be made available to Orange customers in the towns of Strasbourg and Caen in early 2014, ahead of a nationwide roll-out in the second quarter of the year. The launch will speed up the adoption of mobile payments and support the offers from bank partners of Orange and members of Visa.
“Paying with your smartphone is a new function which will take off due to its practicality in everyday life,” said Thierry Millet, vice president (VP) – mobile payments and NFC, Orange. “By launching Orange Cash, we want to accelerate the adoption of mobile payment generally and, of course, among our customers via a simple and secured solution, which offers many advantages.”
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