World Contactless Smart Cards Market to Soar by 2010

PALO ALTO, Calif., March 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Successful projects around the world, like transit and ID programs in APAC, along with advances in the U.S. payments market, are stirring up interest in the rest of the world where these applications are slower to take off. Lessons learned and flourishing use of these contactless cards in some countries give confidence to other regions to follow suit.

In March 2005, MasterCard International and Visa International announced that they had reached an agreement to use a common communications protocol for contactless payment cards and devices. This is expected to increase and ensure interoperability between contactless payment cards and devices. The use of a common protocol for conducting contactless payments will enable vendors to streamline product development and testing, leading to reduced implementation costs and faster time to market for financial institutions and merchants. With a common protocol in place, merchants are expected to have the assurance that a single point of sale terminal may support multiple payment brands, and would require less time for terminal programming and testing.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (http://www.smartcards.frost.com ), World Contactless Smart Cards Markets, reveals that in 2004 the total unit shipment for the world contactless smart card market was 150.56 million units and expects to reach 1.17 billion units by 2010.

If you are interested in a virtual brochure, which provides manufacturers, end-users, and other industry participants with an overview of the latest analysis of the World Contactless Smart Cards Markets then send an e-mail to Tori Foster - Corporate Communications at tori.foster@frost.com with the following information: your full name, company name, title, telephone number, e-mail address, city, state and country. We will send you the information via e-mail upon receipt of the above information.

"As the dominant areas of use in contactless smart cards become more established areas such as banking, government, telecommunications and security, people will start to realize that the benefits of contactless are far reaching," says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Michelle Foong. "Other areas like medical, gaming (betting) and emergency services are starting to look into the use of smart cards to fill the need for security, volume and speed in their sectors. For example, in healthcare and emergency services, medical personnel need to be identified in an instant to ensure that the efficient flow of medical services is provided."

National IDs and passports are areas of massive implementations, where places like United States, China and Europe have sufficiently large populations to generate demand for contactless technology. Where mandates are imposed, the pressure to comply is significant. Other agencies relating to defense, transit and government services are pushing for contactless rollouts to cope with security and efficiency needs.

Progress in National IDs and passports in countries which were previously not as technologically superior as first world countries are showing that the educational barriers have come down significantly in many places, like projects in China, Brazil, Macedonia, Malaysia and Thailand. Unlike other technological advances, some of the more advanced countries are learning from the experiences and successes of these countries before they take the leap themselves. Consumers are starting to integrate contactless technology into their way of life without the apprehension and anxiety previously seen.

Consumer rights groups and privacy concerns in more advanced countries continue to slow down the growth in some areas," says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst, Michelle Foong. "Especially with national ID cards involving the government and the use of biometric features for security needs, this area needs to be addressed to prevent potential lawsuits and human/consumer rights violations."

World Contactless Smart Card Markets, a part of the F275 subscription, provides an overview and outlook for the market. This study has been segmented into market overview, forecasts and trends (overall and by application) and profile of key players. This research includes detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

Frost & Sullivan, a global growth consulting company, has been partnering with clients to support the development of innovative strategies for more than 40 years. The company's industry expertise integrates growth consulting, growth partnership services, and corporate management training to identify and develop opportunities. Frost & Sullivan serves an extensive clientele that includes Global 1000 companies, emerging companies, and the investment community by providing comprehensive industry coverage that reflects a unique global perspective and combines ongoing analysis of markets, technologies, econometrics, and demographics. For more information, visit http://www.frost.com .

World Contactless Smart Cards Market F275-33 Contact: Tori Foster Corporate Communications - North America P: 210.477.8448 F: 210.348.1003 E: tori.foster@frost.com Magdalena Oberland Corporate Communications - Europe P: +44 (0) 20 7915 7876 F: +44 (0) 20 7730 3343 E: magdalena.oberland@frost.com Donna Jeremiah Corporate Communications - Asia Pacific P: +603 6304 5832 F: +603 6201 7402 E: djeremiah@frost.com http://www.frost.com

Keywords in this release: National Ids, Contactless, Smart Cards, payments, biometrics, Passports, Mastercard, Visa

SOURCE Frost & Sullivan

CONTACT: Tori Foster, Corporate Communications - North America, +1-210-477-8448, or fax, +1-210-348-1003, or tori.foster@frost.com , or Magdalena Oberland, Corporate Communications - Europe, +44-0-20-7915-7876, or fax, +44-0-20-7730-3343, or magdalena.oberland@frost.com , or Donna Jeremiah, Corporate Communications - Asia Pacific, +603-6304-5832, or fax, +603-6201-7402, or djeremiah@frost.com , all of Frost & Sullivan

<<PR Newswire -- 03/29/06>>

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