The Italian mobile network operator is to work with French technology cluster Pole SCS on the development of a range of innovative NFC services which will be introduced first in the city of Milan from later this year.
The carrier plans to use the city of Milan, where it has been running a transportation ticketing pilot since April 2011, as its testbed for NFC services. The first connected city services are due to be available by October 2012. Italian financial services giant Intesa Sanpaolo has also picked Milan as one of its two test cities.
Pole SCS specialises in contactless, mobile wireless and secure proximity technologies and covers a number of centres of technology excellence located between the city of Marseille and the Italian border. Members involved in NFC include Gemalto, ST Microelectronics, Intel, ST Ericsson, Adelya, Ask, Cassis, Inside Secure, Neowave, Oberthur Technologies, Soliatis, Tagsys, Texas Instruments, Thales, Think&Go NFC, Trusted Labs and Twinlinx.
"Through the exchange of technology and case stories, the agreement will produce significant business opportunities for Telecom Italia's corporate customers, Pole SCS actors and pave the way for NFC solution rollouts to its global subscriber base," says the carrier. "This environment will provide fertile grounds for the development of new products and services for Telecom Italia."
"This agreement is another important step in our global NFC strategy," says Marco Patuano, COO of Telecom Italia. "We strongly believe that embracing and catalyzing the players of the ecosystem around the capabilities enabled by SIM based NFC, including solution providers, application developer, manufacturers and the operator community, is key to developing this growing market.
"Through this partnership we will be seeking innovative solutions for both our key corporate clients and our wider consumer base."