| TORONTO, June 12
TORONTO, June 12 BlackBerry Ltd said on
Thursday it has signed a agreement with EnStream LP, a mobile
payments joint venture owned by Canada's three large wireless
carriers, to provide a secure platform for transactions between
banks and consumers.
Under the deal, EnStream would use BlackBerry infrastructure
so financial institutions and mobile operators can securely
store sensitive payment card details on any smartphone capable
of using a near field communication (NFC) tag.
NFC tags allow mobile devices to communicate with each other
or other machines like credit card payment systems, by merely
tapping the two together. The institutions would include top
Canadian lenders Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto-Dominion
Bank, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce,
The three-year deal marks the renewal of a preliminary
tie-up initially struck in late 2012 between BlackBerry and
EnStream, which is jointly owned by Rogers Communications Inc
, BCE Inc and Telus Corp.
The deal marks the latest move by the smartphone pioneer to
expand its services business. Waterloo, Ontario-based BlackBerry
has been trying to reinvent itself under new Chief Executive
Officer John Chen as its phones have lost ground to Apple Inc's
iPhone and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd's
Chen wants to remain a competitor in the smartphone segment,
but is focused on making BlackBerry a dominant force in
machine-to-machine communications. The company's QNX software
already is a mainstay in the automobile industry, powering
electronic and other systems in a wide range of cars.
"Working with EnStream demonstrates BlackBerry's strategy to
extend its core enterprise mobility technologies in new and
emerging industries," the company said.
The company already works with hundreds of large enterprise
clients including corporations and government agencies to manage
and secure mobile devices on their internal networks. Chen
intends to use that to make forays into areas like mobile
payments, and create new revenue streams for the company.
(Reporting by Euan Rocha; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)