Russian operators launch NFC-based ticketing in Moscow

News

MegaFon and VimpelCom have launched an NFC based ticketing service to be used in Moscow's transport network.

The operators are using Gemalto's UpTeq Multi-Tenant NFC SIMs for use in the network. The SIMs are being handed out to both operators' customers free of charge.

Passengers can buy tickets by using the Troika app, with payment charged to the user's mobile phone account. Around seven million people use Moscow's transport network each day. It first introduced contactless payment in September last year.

NFC smartphones with the specific SIMs can also be used to make contactless payments at retailers with the technology equipped.

Hayk Karapetyan, Director of Financial Service at MegaFon's R&D arm MegaLabs, said: "The Mobile Ticket project is another step in implementing MegaFon's mobile commerce development strategy. We endeavor for subscribers to see their mobile phone account as a fully-fledged financial tool they can use for day-to-day expenses.

"We see potential in this new service, firstly, because the popularity of mobile payments is rising rapidly; during the first six months of 2015 the number of payments increased 60 percent compared to the same period in 2014 and revenue from mobile financial services rose 30 percent. Secondly, we are seeing a rise in the number of NFC-enabled devices in our network. Over the last year this number has almost doubled both in Moscow and across the country."

Alexander Sakharov, MFS director for VimpelCom, said Gemalto was one of the few suppliers able to meet the technical requirements.