Visa Inc. and Visa Europe, in an official announcement stated that NFC-enabled smartphones from Samsung Electronics, LG Electronics and Research In Motion (RIM) have been certified to use Visa’s mobile application for payments, Visa payWave at the point-of-sale.Smartphones namely, the Samsung Galaxy S II, LG Optimus NET NFC, BlackBerry Bold 9900, BlackBerry Bold 9790, BlackBerry Curve 9360 and BlackBerry Curve 9380 are among the list of Visa compliant payment products that are now available for commercial deployment by financial institutions.

Getting the Visa power to mobiles

All the new devices will come with the certified Visa payWave application on a secure SIM card and feature NFC (Near Field Communication) technology. NFC technology is essentially a short range communications standard that enable mobile phones to securely transmit payment information to a contactless payment terminal.

This is an important step for Visa, its financial institution partners and the mobile industry. In addition to issuing plastic magnetic stripe or chip-enabled payment cards, financial institutions can now consider offering their accountholders a way to transform their smartphones into fully functional mobile payment devices,” said Bill Gajda, Global Head of Mobile Product, Visa Inc.

Visa’s certification of these smartphones pave the way for mobile device manufacturers, mobile operators and retailers to partner with financial institutions to offer Visa mobile payment functionality to consumers globally.

Visa's payWave function on mobile devices is compatible with existing contactless (NFC) payment terminals that have been already installed at retail outlets worldwide, enabling Visa account holders to simply wave their enabled phone in front of a payment terminal in order to pay.

Visa includes a compliance testing process for mobile devices and the secure elements that will provide Visa payWave mobile application. The process includes extensive technical and usability testing with respect to the Visa mobile payment functionality. This helps to ensure reliable and secure Visa transactions, which are compatible with the global standard for chip-enabled payments, and establishes a required signal range for all mobile (NFC-enabled) Visa payment devices. Visa's compliance testing process helps to ensure the combination of the phone; secure chip and Visa’s mobile payment application will provide the level of security and user experience Visa accountholders have come to expect from Visa. 

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