O2 to Test Mobile Payment at Music Fest

The O2 Wireless Festival in England will experiment with tickets on mobile phones read by near field communications devices

O2 will trial near field communications technologies at the O2 Wireless Festival this year, an experiment it predicts could mean the end of using cash at festivals.

The mobile operator will test the technology at the music event, which takes place in London and Leeds on 14 to 17 June.

If the trial is successful, the technology could become integral to mobile ticketing, allowing consumers to download tickets to their mobile phones which they would then swipe past a reader to access the festival, O2 said.

A select number of guests will be provided with a limited edition Swarovski crystal-studded wristband, which gives them backstage access when they swipe it past an enabled mobile phone.

O2 head of sponsorship Amanda Jennings said the potential benefits are enormous, not only in terms of mobile ticketing but also saving money through administration and even the end of cash at festivals.

The network has increasingly used mobile ticketing at the event over a number of years. This year the event has sold £200,000 worth of tickets through mobile ticketing, a 100 per cent rise on 2006. Punters have reacted enthusiastically to the scheme, as they save money on a booking fee and delivery.

Festival goers will be able to upload content from their mobiles, as well as downloading it. O2 Bluetooth stations will allow music fans to upload their festival photos or video clips for free, using Upload Hypertag technology, and have their experiences played on the big festival screens.

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