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    Archive: News in brief

    Samsung Pay to launch in Russia?

    February 16th, 2016

    Samsung Pay may soon be on its way to Russia, SamMobile reports. “It appears that Russia’s largest mobile carrier has already prepared promotional material for the Galaxy S7; the image leaked online shows a poster with the very familiar looking Galaxy S7 as well as a clear indication that Samsung Pay will be supported,” the publication says. “Samsung Pay might very well be launched in Russia alongside the new flagship in the coming weeks.”

    Apple Pay to launch in China on 18 February?

    February 16th, 2016

    Apple Pay could launch in China this week following confirmation from China Guangfa Bank. “The bank’s WeChat account is dispensing information about Apple Pay and the available menu options include a query about when Apple Pay will be available,” Tech In Asia reports. “If you select that option, the account will tell you it’s coming to China on February 18.” French website iGen is also reporting that the service will make its French debut in the first half of this year, “perhaps during the WWDC to be held in June”.

    Korean banks back Samsung Pay

    February 16th, 2016

    Korean banks are lining up to support Samsung Pay, including Shinhan Bank, KB Kookmin Bank, NH Nonghyup Bank and Industrial Bank of Korea, Korea Joongang Daily reports. “Currently, Samsung Pay only works with Woori Bank, but the exclusive contract between the two will expire next month, and now, more institutions are seeking to link up with Samsung Pay,” the publication says. 80,000 credit and debit cards were registered on Samsung Pay in Korea within a week of its launch.

    Payfriendz launches P2P messaging app in the UK

    February 15th, 2016

    UK consumers can now make P2P transfers and pay online using a virtual MasterCard through Payfriendz. “Payfriendz is a social chat and mobile payments app which allows users to easily send, request and receive money from friends and contacts,” says Paysafe, the payments provider for the service. “Once funds have been collected, users can transfer the money to their UK bank account. They can also shop online using a virtual MasterCard card linked to their Payfriendz account.”

    PayPal adds buy buttons

    February 15th, 2016

    PayPal has unveiled a new platform that enables merchants and partners to embed buy buttons in emails, social shares, blogs, articles, ads and apps through a set of APIs. “The PayPal Commerce tools, which are currently in beta, allow merchants to securely sell across contexts — anywhere consumers are online or on their mobile devices,” the company says. The platform is the result of the company’s acquisition of mobile commerce platform Modest in the second half of 2015.

    LG delays launch of LG Pay

    February 15th, 2016

    LG is to postpone the launch of its LG Pay mobile payments service to the second quarter of this year, the company has told Korea Times. The delay is “to help the new LG flagship smartphone — G5 — receive more media attention,” LG said. The company’s plans to launch the service were confirmed in November 2015.

    SIMalliance updates OMAPI secure element specification

    February 15th, 2016

    SIMalliance has updated its Open Mobile API (OMAPI) specification, which sets out how mobile applications may access different secure elements on a mobile device and is mandated by EMVCo for mobile contactless payments. “A key update in v3.2 addresses requirements from ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute) and GSMA to give the mobile application additional control to properly retrieve information from the secure element (SE),” the trade association says.

    Visa claims 10% stake in Square trading shares

    February 15th, 2016

    Visa has revealed it has a 9.99% stake of Class A shares in mobile POS provider Square. The payment network holds more than 4m of Square’s Class B shares which don’t trade publicly but can be converted to approximately 3.52m in Class A shares, according to an SEC filing. Square filed for an initial public offering in October 2015 and began shipping its NFC device in December.

    US banks get on board for mobile at the ATM

    February 12th, 2016

    Millions of dollars in withdrawals and “hundreds of thousands” of transactions have now been made via Cardless Cash, the ATM functionality launched by banking and payment technologies provider FIS in January 2015 to let customers withdraw cash using their smartphone. US banks including BMO Harris, Wintrust, WSFS, Salem Five and Avidia Bank have installed the functionality in their ATM network, with others including Popular Community Bank and Oriental Bank deploying the technology this year.

    Samsung Pay to make UK and Spain debut “very soon”

    February 11th, 2016

    Samsung Pay will launch in the UK and Spain “very soon”, the head of Samsung Pay Europe has announced during the phone-maker’s European Forum 2016 event in Monaco. “More details at Mobile World Congress in a few weeks’ time,” Pocket-lint reports the company’s Nathalie Oestmann as saying.

    Axis Bank customers to get NFC wearables

    February 11th, 2016

    India’s Axis Bank has partnered with fitness technology provider GOQii to develop a wearable device that will allow its customers to make contactless payments. “The device will allow consumers to make NFC payments and will come loaded with the regular fitness related features like the coach etc that the GOQii bands come with,” the bank’s Rajiv Anand told Economic Times. The two companies expect to roll out the device in the coming months.

    Payleven raises $10m for mPOS growth

    February 11th, 2016

    European mobile point of sale specialist Payleven has closed a US$10m Series D funding round, bringing the total raised to date to $51m. “The newly secured investment provides Payleven with additional growth capital,” the company says. Payleven introduced a chip and PIN reader that supports NFC in 2014.

    GSMA publishes IoT security guidelines

    February 11th, 2016

    The GSMA has published a set of security guidelines for service providers developing new Internet of Things (IoT) products and services. “The mobile telecommunications industry has a long history of providing secure products and services to their customers and would like to share their security expertise with IoT service providers,” the GSMA says.

    Security update fixes Apple Pay flaw

    February 11th, 2016

    Apple has released a security update that fixes more than 100 iOS bugs, including a vulnerability in Apple Pay that allowed third parties to see sensitive information as a payment was made. “The security issue would have allowed hackers to trace the recent transactions that users made through Apple’s mobile payment system,” Tech Times reports. “All the information regarding the transactions could be obtained by hackers through the log feature of the platform. With the update, the functionality has been entirely removed.”

    Ireland looks to NFC payments for public transport

    February 11th, 2016

    Commuters on Dublin Bus and Iarnród Éireann rail services may soon be able to pay for transport with a tap of an NFC device under plans put forward by public transport operator CIÉ. “Plans published by CIÉ show that it wants to upgrade its IT systems to accommodate new forms of payments, including Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Stripe,” Independent.ie reports. “The semi-state transport company is also eyeing alternative payment systems such as Android Pay, MasterPass and Visa Checkout.”

    Mobeam update brings loyalty to POS scanners

    February 11th, 2016

    Mobeam has updated its mobile coupon and offer app Beep’nGo to let customers use retail loyalty cards, gift cards and barcode coupons on their smartphone at checkout scanners for the first time. “Mobeam currently operates with more than 330m Samsung Android phones and the company is in talks with other manufacturers to expand the technology,” Mobeam says of its infrared light based barcode system. The app currently has more than 10m installs.

    Apple Pay glitch prevents users adding Visa cards

    February 10th, 2016

    Apple has now resolved a service outage that meant users were unable to add credit cards and debit cards to Apple Pay for almost seven hours today. “The issue only appears to be affecting Visa cards, not American Express, MasterCard or Discover cards,” 9to5mac reported. “Making payments with Apple Pay and Visa cards also appears unaffected as the issue is only with adding new cards to Apple Pay.”

    Mobile savings club scoops innovation award

    February 10th, 2016

    PARTNER NEWS: Mahindra Comviva and mobile money and payments provider EcoCash have won the Best Mobile Innovation prize at the sixth Kalahari Awards for the EcoCash Savings Club. “EcoCash Savings Club, powered by Mahindra Comviva’s Mobiquity Money platform, is a group saving service which digitizes traditional savings clubs in Zimbabwe,” Mahindra Comviva says. “It is aimed at the self-employed, informal sector entrepreneurs, street vendors, and women’s groups who were limited to informal group savings previously as they were considered financially ineligible by mainstream banks.”

    Visa offers mobile card controls

    February 10th, 2016

    Consumers will soon be able to stop transactions taking place if their card is lost or stolen, set spending controls and receive transaction alerts on their smartphone via a new service launched by Visa. “Financial institutions who adopt Visa Consumer Transaction Controls will be able to offer the service through their mobile banking application, mobile wallet or website,” Visa says. “Issuers can choose the features to provide to their consumers.”

    Kiwis warm to mobile payments and biometrics

    February 10th, 2016

    More than four in ten New Zealanders (41%) would consider using NFC mobile payments today and 44% believe mobile payments will be the next thing to take off, followed by biometrics/facial recognition/fingerprints (21%) and wearable technology (18%), research from MasterCard reveals. 49% expect they will not use cash in ten years’ time, with more than a third believing retailers need to do more to embrace new payment technologies.

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