SFR roll out NFC SIMs


France’s SFR is the latest telco with plans to get into the payments market, rolling out a contactless co-branded prepaid card with MasterCard Worldwide.

SFR and MasterCard signed their partnership agreement in July to jointly develop contactless card and NFC payment services. The first part of the deal will yield the co-branded prepaid card, called SFR PayCard, which the telco plans to launch next month – writes Dan Balaban.

SFR also announced it would start issuing NFC SIM cards generally to its post paid customers at the beginning of 2013. That follows No. 1 French telco France Telecom-Orange, which said it has recently launched a roll out of NFC SIMs to subscribers to try to seed the market in advance of the deployment of NFC services.

Both telcos had planned to launch their NFC SIM rollouts earlier. They have been hit hard by competing low-cost mobile offers in France, though, at least according to Orange, that hasn’t delayed the NFC SIM rollout.

Thes announcement makes SFR the latest European telco to disclose plans for launching its own mobile-payments service on NFC phones, in partnership with a major payment scheme. It follows deals announced by such major telecom groups as Vodafone, Telef