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Rio goes contactless for transport tickets

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Rio de Janiero, host to the 2016 Summer Olympics, is implementing a contactless transport ticket system.
Gemalto is partnering with RioCard, Rio de Janeiro’s public transportation ticketing operator, to implement contactless transport ticket wristbands. When fully implemented, the solution will simplify secure payments and improve convenience ensuring smoother travel via any mode of transportation (bus, ferry, subway and train) for more than 10-million residents and visitors to Brazil’s second-largest city.
With a simple wave of a wristband near the contactless readers already deployed throughout the city, the solution will enable users to access public transportation, improve transactions’ speed and simplify travel logistics, building a foundation for simple and secure contactless payments long after the final ceremony.
Gemalto is supplying RioCard with its waterproof Celego Contactless MiniTag wristband and its Celego Contactless MiniTag Sticker. Both contain an embedded contactless chip from Gemalto and are certified by Visa and MasterCard enabling all the secure functionalities of traditional contactless EMV cards.
Contactless transit cards were first adopted by RioCard in Rio de Janeiro in 2003 and they are now a part of daily life for millions of users.
“The new RioCard wristbands support our goal to create a more convenient and secure travel experience for all residents and visitors to Rio de Janeiro,” says Cassiano Rusycki, CEO of RioCard. “The success of recent contactless projects with Gemalto, like the Lille project in France and Visa’s wearable wristband in Brazil have motivated this solution which builds a technological legacy enabling streamlined transportation and improved peace of mind for travellers.”
As NFC payment solutions mature in Africa and consumers become increasingly comfortable with their use, the development of other solutions based on NFC have gathered pace.
“Customers are demanding more when it comes to banking services and they are looking for banks to provide convenient and innovative solutions,” notes Paul Opie, banking field marketing manager for Africa at Gemalto.
In South Africa, banks such as Absa, Standard Bank and FNB have successfully launched contactless cards to customers.
Contactless payments are expected to form the bridge needed to traverse the gap to NFC. Users can become accustomed to the concept of contactless retail payments by using a format that is familiar, like their credit or debit card. Once familiarity grows, moving to an NFC-enabled transaction should appear less formidable.