MasterCard and Deutsche Telekom today announced a partnership to roll out mobile payments technology across Europe. The initiative will begin with the introduction of tag-based payment systems in Poland and Germany, with a mobile wallet service planned for the first half of 2013. The system will be open to competing card issuers and carriers, with the reported aim of building "a comprehensive ecosystem around mobile payments."
According to the oddly-worded press release, "the mobile wallet will be realized in the environment of the SIM card of the smartphones," suggesting that personal wallets will be linked to users' Telekom or T-Mobile accounts via the SIM card. MasterCard approved a SIM for secure payments more than a year ago, using an in-built NFC app from Gemalto, and plans to roll out its PayPass Wallet service in the US, UK, Australia and Canada during the third quarter of this year.