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In a move that MasterCard Worldwide says is helping to pave the way for contactless mobile payments in the U.S., the card company on Oct. 7 announced that 7,000 Subway restaurants will accept PayPass by the end of the first quarter of 2012. Subway follows McDonald’s Corp., which began taking PayPass in 2004 at its U.S. locations.

One analyst says it behooves the card companies to consider contactless cards as a lead-in to mobile payments.

“All of the brands recognize that their key role in the [payments] ecosystem is the transition from cards to phones,” says Todd Ablowitz, president of Double Diamond Group. “That’s where contactless fits.”

Payments Source, October 7, 2011