Vodafone Begins German Rollout of Mobile Wallet (Dec. 16, 2013)
Vodafone Germany last Friday began its German launch of a mobile wallet with the integrated Vodafone SmartPass Visa payment application. Starting with Dusseldorf, where there already are approximately 800 NFC acceptance points, the service will be rolled out across all of Germany in the first quarter of 2014, according to an announcement. The wallet currently is live in Spain, and is set to roll out to the Netherlands, U.K. and Italy in spring 2014.
Customers with an NFC-enabled and wallet-certified smartphone receive a SIM card, enabling them to pay with their Vodafone SmartPass at all Visa-certified contactless terminals. Owners of mobile phones without integrated NFC technology can bridge this gap by attaching a SmartPass NFC sticker to the device. Every Vodafone SmartPass user receives a Visa prepaid card for use at terminals that have not yet been upgraded for NFC payment.
The Wirecard Group is handling all technical and financial services for the Vodafone SmartPass card solution, including issuing plastic and digital Visa cards for the wallet through its Wirecard Card Solutions subsidiary.
“We have created the best possible conditions for ensuring that mobile payment can soon be entirely integrated in everyday life for everyone,” said Frank Vahldiek, director of consumer services and innovations at Vodafone Germany. “With our flexible range of services comprising NFC SIM cards and stickers, every mobile phone can be fitted with the contactless function.”