A small scale near field communication trial has begun in Finland. Forty members of staff from payments provider Luottokunta, Sodexo, Visa Europe and Venyon have been issued with NFC handsets that they can use to make payments at merchants equipped to handle contactless payments in Helsinki and at Luottokunta's offices. The trial participants are able to make small value payments, under €20, without a PIN and high value payments, above €20, by entering a PIN on their handset.
"The six month trial also paves the way for contactless payments in Finland, allowing Visa card holders to make contactless payments using their Visa credit or debit cards as well as NFC-enabled mobile phones," says Visa Europe.
"At Visa, we have a vision for the future of payments and bringing Visa's contactless technology to our mobile phones is key to this vision," says Sandra Alzetta, senior vice president for innovation and new product and channel development at Visa Europe. "Finland is the birthplace of some of the most cutting-edge technology and services the mobile industry has seen, and it is no surprise that this key market in the Nordics has also embraced the latest trends in payments."
"Trials are a key milestone in building a sustainable mobile payments ecosystem to bring together banks, mobile operators, payment schemes, handset manufacturers and the numerous other parties required to deliver services to consumers," she added. "This initiative with Luottokunta is a first step for the Finnish market."
"Finland is a leader in card payments in Europe, so it is only natural that we are a front-runner in developing new payment solutions," explained Heikki Kapanen, CEO of Luottokunta. "We have high expectations of contactless payments and see it as a wonderful opportunity for the future."