On Track Innovations Ltd. (OTI) plans to ship 40,000 Near Field Communication payment readers to North America by the end of the year.

The company plans to ship further readers over the course of a three-year period as part of a $10 million contract with a distribution partner it would not name. The partner serves the unattended retail market, which OTI defines as self-service laundry, vending machines, pay-at-the-pump and drive-thru.

The agreement "reflects increasing traction for greater adoption of NFC," says Ofer Tziperman, CEO of OTI, in a Nov. 5 press release. "In fact, compared to last year, we have already more than doubled the number of readers we have shipped globally."

NFC-based payments have yet to gain widespread adoption in the U.S., but several companies are banking on the technology. The major wireless carriers' Isis mobile wallet, which relies on NFC technology, is set to launch nationwide by the end of this year. Google's mobile wallet also uses NFC, and the latest version of its Android operating system allows software emulation of NFC technology.

OTI also makes an NFC device that plugs into a mobile phones' headphone jack. The device, which was recently certified by MasterCard Inc., looks similar to Square's mobile card reader but instead allows a non-NFC phone to initiate mobile payments.

The readers could help banks by providing a way for financial institutions to offer an NFC-based mobile wallet without dictating which phone or carrier its customers use.

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