Case Study : Hong KongOctopus Card
"Octopus Card" - the world's first commercial deployment of FeliCa - has been one of the best practices of transit cards in the world.
Octopus Card is an electronic payment system in Hong Kong using Sony FeliCa.
In September 1997, the Octopus fare collection system took the first step in making everyday life easier in Hong Kong. The innovative approach eliminated the need for commuters to find exact change and allowed them to travel across multiple public transport modes using just a single FeliCa card.
Since 2000, Octopus Card has extended its reach into small-value payments in the retail sector as well as many other applications, including parking, access control for residential and commercial buildings, support for various facilities in schools, and self-service kiosks. Octopus Card has been continuously used by Hong Kong residents and tourists as a payment tool for the past 25 years.
Taking advantage of FeliCa's feature of flexibility in shape, Octopus Card is more than just a card. From On-Loan Octopus Card to merchandise for consumers and corporations, including key chains, ornaments, watches, and limited-edition Octopus Cards, the growing range of Octopus products are designed to find a fit within every lifestyle.
Since 2013, Octopus has been extended into mobile payment services, i.e. "Octopus Mobile SIM", "Octopus Card on iPhone or Apple Watch", "Huawei Pay Octopus", and "Smart Octopus in Samsung Pay", enabling people to use their mobile phone as a physical Octopus Card.
Customers can make Octopus transactions with their mobile device at all authorized service providers who have installed Octopus readers with just a tap, and do not need to open an app or wake the device, thus enjoying the convenience of mobile payment services.
With the Bluetooth reader called "Octopus Mobile POS", Octopus continues to expand the places of use, such as taxis and small stores. Today, the number of acceptance points has reached more than 140,000 locations*. Taxi drivers can utilize their mobile phones as a typical Octopus readers by simply installing the Octopus App for Business. Customers can simply tap their Octopus Cards on the NFC detection area, either at the back of the driver's mobile phone or on the Octopus Mobile POS display to pay the fare.
By being able to use in any situation such as public transport, retail, access control, parking, or online shopping, Octopus Card has become an indispensable existence in Hong Kong.
Today, more than 33 million Octopus Cards and products are in circulation, with 98% of people in Hong Kong aged 15 to 64 possessing Octopus Cards, which can be used for travelling, shopping, or dining, making everyday life easier.*
As a convenient use case under the COVID-19 pandemic, consumers who use a physical Octopus Card can now purchase a commuter pass through Octopus App using mobile phones.
"Octopus was the first contactless smart card system in the world adopting Sony FeliCa technology for e-money applications. We value the long-term and strategic partnership with Sony as we have high requirements on reliability, security, and flexibility of our smart card system. All these attributes are critical for Octopus to provide the best-in-class services to our customers and maintain our leadership position in the industry."
Sammy Kam, Technical Director,
Octopus Cards Limited
Launched in 1997 by OCL, the Octopus system in Hong Kong is one of the world's leading and most extensively accepted contactless smartcard payment systems. Its aspiration is to bring diversity and inclusion in payment to customers of all facets of life.
The Octopus Group exports its unique experience and technology overseas, offering consultancy services across the world. The mission of OCL is simple: Making everyday life easier by using innovative payment technology.