Near-Field Communication Must Overcome Hurdles to Wider Adoption

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The GSM Association has called on mobile phone manufacturers to support near-field communication (NFC) technology by building radio-frequency identification (RFID) chips into mobile devices from mid-2009. It is recommending that manufacturers adopt the Single Wire Protocol (SWP) standard, which involves a direct connection between an embedded NFC chipset and a SIM card. The association believes there is universal interest in "proximity payments" using this technology and is keen to push adoption of RFID in handsets to drive costs down through economies of scale.

In September 2008, Nokia and O2 announced the results of their O2 Wallet trial. This involved 500 people in the UK using mobile phones with integrated RFID chips. The trial allowed them to make contactless payments using Barclaycard Visa payWave and travel on London's public transport system using the Oyster service.