Mobile technology to drive consumer interaction at London Olympics

The BT team responsible for the communications infrastructure at the London 2012 Olympic Games is exploring ways to use mobile services to enhance the consumer experience. Under discussion are phone voting and the use of NFC for small payments and for event staff management.

MOBILE GAMES: NFC is set to play a part in the London 2012 Olympics
MOBILE GAMES: NFC is set to play a part in the London 2012 Olympics

The Olympic Games has a history of showcasing leading edge technology and it looks as though London 2012 will be no exception. The BT London 2012 team, charged with building the communications infrastructure for the games, is putting in place a mobile strategy designed to improve the overall experience of attending the games.

“There are plans to give an emphasis to mobile technology to enhance consumer interaction at the games,” Stuart Hill, vice president of BT’s London 2012 delivery programme, told Computing. Also on the cards for 2012 are:

  • The roll-out of NFC-enabled payment terminals for items costing under £10 (likely to leverage Barclaycard’s existing plans to convert its merchants to contactless technology and Barclaycard’s work with Transport for London, Visa Europe, TranSys, Nokia, AEG and O2 on the O2 wallet trial earlier this year.)
  • A new handset that could be jointly developed by BT with Samsung and LOCOG (the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games) which would be used by staff working at event sites.
  • Mobile TV services allowing live updates on sporting events.
  • Reality TV-style voting for the public’s favourite athletes.

In total, the project to provide London 2012’s communications infrastructure involves 80,000 connections over 94 sites with 16,500 fixed telephone lines, 2,796 miles of fibre and a network of 14,000 mobile phones.

Next: Visit the NFCW Expo to find new suppliers and solutions