The phone manufacturer and payments network, both Worldwide Olympics Sponsors, are to enable athletes and visitors at the London 2012 Olympics to make payments using a special Samsung Olympic and Paralympic Games mobile handset.
Samsung and Visa have announced a strategic alliance designed to bring NFC payments to the London 2012 Olympics, enabling consumers to make mobile payments using a special Samsung Olympic and Paralympic Games mobile phone.
"In London there are already more than 60,000 locations where contactless payments are accepted and contactless and electronic card payments will be available in the run-up to and during the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games," the partners say.
"Samsung and Visa will work together to provide the contactless enabled Olympics handset to Visa and Samsung sponsored athletes as part of this initiative," they add. "Samsung and Visa also plan to make the handset available for consumers to purchase through mobile network operators and other distributors."
Peter Ayliffe, CEO of Visa Europe, explained the thinking behind the project. "Visa, like Samsung, shares the vision of leveraging our Olympic and Paralympic Games sponsorship to leave a lasting legacy in the market for banks, retailers, mobile operators and consumers. We are not only breaking new ground for Olympic partnerships, we are committed to enabling consumers to connect with mobile and contactless payments technology for 2012 and beyond. We look forward to working with financial institutions and mobile operators alongside Samsung to make this initiative a success."
Seokpil Kim, president and CEO of Samsung Electronics Europe, added that "Samsung is striving for long term change in the way we use mobile payments. In London next year, we regard the greatest show on earth as the perfect opportunity to showcase how this technology can make a positive difference to people's lives — enabling them to feel closer to the Olympic and Paralympic Games. This mobile payment device will be available in the UK initially, and we plan to expand the service to other countries in Europe and around the world where contactless payment facilities are available in the near future."