Russian operator MTS expanded its mobile money platform, enabling the app to be accessed by feature phone users, subscribers of other networks, and to make payments over NFC.

MTS, which also runs a bank in the country, said it also planned to add compatibility with Apple Pay and Samsung Pay to MTS Money Wallet.

In a statement, MTS said the expansion into feature phones would address the 45 per cent of its mobile subscribers using the devices and is scheduled for availability in July.

The company, which is vying for the position of being the country’s leading operator by connections with Megafon, launched its MTS Money app in August 2016.

Initially the app was limited to making online payments and money transfers. It was then rebranded in February 2017 to MTS Money Wallet with the promise of new features later in the year.

At its February relaunch, MTS VP for strategy and marketing Vasyl Latsanych said: “We believe that cash and cards will become redundant in near future. All we’ll need for comfortable communications and financial management is a smartphone”