EMVCo and NFC Forum Announce Collaboration to Optimise NFC Testing Processes

EMVCo and the NFC Forum have agreed to work together to optimise the development and testing process of Near Field Communication (NFC)-enabled mobile devices for vendors, through exploring alignment of the two organisations’ specifications, and cross-recognition of test results. The alliance will offer significant benefits to stakeholders involved in EMV-related NFC use cases and products in the contactless payments industry by reducing product time-to-market and decreasing certification costs.

EMVCo, the EMV standards body collectively owned by American Express, JCB, MasterCard and Visa, has signed a Collaboration Agreement with the NFC Forum, a non-profit industry association that advances the use of NFC technology. The goal of the collaboration is to establish a framework to synchronise NFC Forum and EMVCo Specifications, test plans, test tools, laboratory accreditations and the management of contactless product certification. The framework will ultimately streamline the development and testing process of contactless technology for vendors.

Activity will focus on Level 1 functionality, which covers contactless communication protocol. Initial efforts will centre on outlining the scope of work and the specifications to be covered. These efforts will be followed by a gap analysis to identify and examine specification differences, agree on specification updates where necessary and how agreed amendments will be collectively managed.

Joe Cunningham, current Chair of the EMVCo Executive Committee, comments: “To enable contactless to reach its full potential and facilitate the delivery of secure payment solutions, we need to create an efficient testing and certification framework that allows products to be swiftly brought to market. Alignment between industry bodies is therefore essential to ensure we apply specialist knowledge and a cohesive approach to the creation of this very innovative ecosystem. EMVCo recognises the importance of our work with the NFC Forum and is committed to progressing activity as a priority.”

Koichi Tagawa, NFC Forum Chairman, adds: “At the NFC Forum, we want to make it fast and affordable for organisations to build and deploy EMV-based NFC solutions. By working closely with EMVCo, we’re able to better support vendors while furthering our commitment to global interoperability.”

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