Mobile Handset Availability 2011 -- Tread Lightly Through The NFC Mobile Payments Hype

There is no question there is significant momentum behind NFC mobile payments this year. The Google Wallet initiative, ISIS, the UK, French, Dutch and Dane JVs all bode well for mobile payments – in the long term.
Short term, it is a different story. There will be no NFC mobile payments until there are mobile handsets in the hands of consumers that are equipped with NFC hardware and configured with mobile payment applications.
There have been many announcements this year about mobile handset that will be shipped with NFC capabilities, but you need to look closely and understand if those devices are being shipped with NFC mobile payment capabilities. To date, most are not.
Nokia’s N9 and C7 – shipping with NFC capabilities, but NOT enabled for mobile payments
Research In Motion’s new Blackberry Bold 990 and 9930 – shipping with NFC capabilities, but NOT enabled for mobile payments. (I confirmed this with RIM spokesperson yesterday).
Google Nexus S on AT&T, T-Mobile -- NOT enabled for Google Wallet. Only Nexus S on Sprint network is NFC payment capable today.
So what handsets are being shipped currently that are NFC mobile payment-enabled? The Google Nexus S on Sprint, Orange UK’s QuickTap, some test phones in France, etc.
There will be more announcements from mobile handset makers this year regarding NFC phones, just make sure you understand that NFC mobile phones do not equate to NFC mobile payment enabled devices.