Dubai First’ to launch NFC in region

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Dubai First and du, the UAE’s integrated telecom services provider, have announced a joint partnership for the launch of the first NFC-based pilot programme for mobile payments in the Middle East and North Africa region.

The pilot programme will be introduced in the UAE to around 250 customers selected from Dubai First’s recently launched Platinum MasterCard with Dubai Properties Group. The Platinum MasterCard is currently available to residents of Jumeirah Beach Residence and surrounding localities (Dubai Internet City; Dubai Media City; Knowledge Village and other places).

Selected customers will be able to securely download their credit card functionality to specially equipped mobile handsets over du’s mobile network. Once the handset has been personalized, customers will be able to make purchases using their du mobile lines at multiple PayPass enabled merchant locations in the UAE.

‘The launch of the NFC payment programme is a landmark in our efforts to bring innovation to credit card customers in the UAE. The programme will help us evaluate how customers use this new technology,’ comments Ibrahim Al Ansari, CEO, Dubai First. ‘We believe that mobile payments will play a major role in the future of credit cards. Jumeirah Beach Residence is the ideal ecosystem for launching this programme. We look forward to working with du and our partners on bringing mobile commerce to customers in the UAE.’

‘The growing sophistication of mobility – in terms of devices and technology – has led to it playing an increasingly important role in people’s lives; rather than exclusively as a means for communication,’ continues Farid Faraidooni, executive VP, commercial, du.

‘The NFC pilot programme along with our partner Dubai First signifies the pinnacle of this sophistication; which will now bring users the most innovative and contemporary method for payment in Dubai.’

Dubai First and du will run the pilot for a period of six months at ‘The Walk’ at Jumeirah Beach Residence in Dubai. During this time, selected customers can take advantage of special offers at retailers and a range of promotions presented on the interactive NFC platform. The NFC initiative will be launched commercially later in the year and will be expanded to include several speciality applications.