Visiting Singapore today can feel like you’re visiting a global city of tomorrow thanks to its futuristic adoption of near-field communications (NFC) technology.
Faster than any other country, the city-state is adopting NFC as a means of contact-less payment.
Singapore’s three mainÂ mobile network operators are rolling out NFC services accepted byÂ 20,000 shops and taxis.
Payment for bus and train trips will be added shortly.
The EZ-Link payment system for the country’s transportation network is also NFC-enabled, and the mobile operators will soon link up their systems with it.
Singapore is the first city in the world to have mobile operators, digital security providers, banks, credit card issuers, and local transportation systems cooperate in creating a unified service for customers.
Mobile carriers lead the way
All three offer credit, prepaid, and stored value services, adding MasterCard and Visa accounts in waves.
Since last week, users can download an EZ -Link app for Android devices to check transaction history and balances and top-up the EZ-link purse with any debit or credit card.
Gemalto’s technology handles the over-the-air provisioning of confidential payment credentials to users of the smart phones and the participating shops.
Worldwide one out of every eight Android devices worldwide contain NFC chips, which broadcast a signal that enables payment and identification.
In Singapore, about one of three smart phones are NFC-enabled.
The future is now in Singapore, at least as far as mobile payment is concerned.
Tomorrow may come sooner than we think, though. Smart device adoption is being adopted 10 times faster than that of the 1980s PC revolution, says Flurry.
Worldwide “Google is now shipping 1 million NFC-enabled Android devices every week,” says TechCrunch.