Macau telco CTM has launched mobile WiFi hotspots on 330 public buses. The firm also announced an electronic stored-value scheme -– "M.wallet" – where people can make payments, such as bus fares, by swiping their smartphones at Macau Pass terminals (Macau Pass is a contactless card-payment system similar to Hong Kong's Octopus card).
A launch ceremony was held at CTM’s Telecentro shop in Taipa last week. Ebel Cham Pou I, the company’s VP for commercial affairs, told reporters that the company will be launching more mobile application services as its optic fiber network and 4G network infrastructures have been completed.
“We’ll keep on expanding,” said Cham. "We’ll be speaking to other bus companies and other public transport [operators] like taxis to install mobile WiFi hotspots."
The M.wallet product combines Macau Pass and NFC features for CTM customers with Android handsets, and allows them to make payments or top up the electronic wallet at about 3,000 Macau Pass terminals. Customers can check their balances and transaction records, settle their CTM phone or Internet bills, and top up prepaid cards on CTM's mobile app "CTM Buddy" – available for Android and iOS.
Cham said that CTM has spoken to Apple about making the M.wallet feature available for iOS, but also noted that Apple has its own mobile payment system. The CTM VP also said that CTM was working with Alipay and a number of credit card companies to launch an e-commerce service in the first quarter of next year.
“With an online shopping platform, local SMEs can open an online shop without having to set up their own online payment systems which is complicated, and there are a lot of security issues involved,” said Cham.
This story was first published in The Macau Post Daily