The village of Rhiwbina, where the 11,000 locals have been without access to a cash machine for the last two years, has been picked as the demo site for O2's new mobile wallet service, which supports mobile remittances, price comparisons, offers and mobile commerce today and is due to include NFC "in time".
Mobile network operator O2 has picked a village in south Wales as the demonstration site for its new mobile payments service.
O2 Wallet, launched in April 2012, offers a suite of payments and marketing services to any mobile phone user, regardless of the carrier they get their mobile service from. While continuing delays with the UK mobile network operators' Project Oscar NFC joint venture mean that the service does not currently support NFC, mobile remittances, price comparisons, offers and mobile commerce are available today and NFC is due to be added "in time".
"Rhiwbina was chosen from villages across the UK to demonstrate how the newly launched O2 Wallet could help the 11,000 residents who often find themselves short of cash at the most inconvenient moments," says the mobile operator. "Residents of Rhiwbina were challenged to use O2 Wallet in a variety of situations they often face including to pay back IOUs, split the cost of a round in the pub or give pocket money to their teenagers."
A video produced by the operator's O2 Guru TV service has documented locals' experiences of the new service, including a mother requesting money from her friend for the shopping she bought for her at the farmers' market; a scrum half from the local rugby team who doesn't have enough cash to cover the next round and a ballroom dancing enthusiast who needs to pay back his partner for the weekly subs:
"We're delighted that the residents of Rhiwbina enjoyed using O2 Wallet and that it helped solve a variety of everyday money issues," says James Le Brocq, managing director of O2 Money. "With O2 Wallet, it's easier to transfer money, track expenditure and pay quickly and securely using your mobile. We believe it will transform the way people manage their finances and spend money."