East Japan Railway Company (JR East) and NTT DoCoMo, Inc. (DoCoMo) announced today that they have signed a basic agreement to discuss joint development and management of common infrastructure for JR East’s Suica e-money and DoCoMo’s upcoming “Osaifu-Keitai” credit card service, both based on FeliCa smart card technology. [Ed's note: They announced the tie-up at this presser back in March]
Suica is JR East’s IC card for railway travel and shopping, while Osaifu-Keitai refers to DoCoMo mobile phones equipped with contactless IC cards that can serve as credit cards and perform other useful functions.
Under the agreement, the two companies will consider the development of a reader/writer compatible with both companies’ services and the creation and management of a common center that connects the reader/writers with various settlement systems.
A common reader/writer and settlement center will encourage retail shops to offer the services because they will only need a single reader/writer, saving space and reducing costs. The companies hope this will increase the number of service users by allowing shoppers the option of using either Suica e-money or the Osaifu-Keitai credit card service.
The companies feel that working together will promote their services more effectively than if they were to act separately.
JR East and DoCoMo aim to reach the final agreement within 2005.
Via: DoCoMo PR
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