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Archive: News in brief

UK banks cautious in Apple Pay talks

January 5th, 2015

Britain’s top banks are in talks with Apple to introduce Apple Pay in the first half of this year, but negotiations have proved difficult due to concerns around the amount of personal and financial information Apple can collect about its customers. “Some executives fear Apple Pay and the data it delivers to Apple could serve as a beachhead for an invasion of the banking industry,” The Telegraph reports.

Fime gets NFC Forum analog testing qualification

January 5th, 2015

NFC testing specialist Fime has announced its labs in Asia, EMEA and Korea have been qualified to perform NFC Forum analog certification testing. “These Fime laboratories are now authorised to perform all forms of NFC Forum certification testing, covering analog, digital, logical link control protocol and simple NDEF exchange protocol (SNEP),” the company explains.

BMW uses NFC for print advertising

January 5th, 2015

Car maker BMW has embedded NFC tags in a four-page advertisement for its i3 and i8 models in German magazine Spiegel Wissen. “Tapping a smartphone once on the advert instantly downloads the BMW i-app,” platform provider Tamoco explains. “Customers interacting with the print ad are directed to the most relevant content based on which operating system they use or how often they have tapped the ad previously.”

Mozido buys CorFire

December 19th, 2014

Cloud-based mobile payments platform provider Mozido has acquired the majority ownership of mobile commerce specialist CorFire, previously wholly-owned by South Korean IT services provider SK C&C. “By adding [Corfire’s] strength in NFC-enabled mobile wallets to Mozido’s extensive mobile financial services and retail marketing capabilities, we can now give merchants around the world access to a powerful mobile ecosystem,” says Mozido’s Michael Liberty.

Touch ID patent adds fingertip motion

December 19th, 2014

Future iPhones may use a combination of Touch ID and fingertip motion to protect access, a recent Apple patent application has revealed. “An electronic device may include a finger biometric sensor, a display and a processor coupled to the finger biometric sensor and the display,” the filing explains. The patent application goes on to explain how a phone could be partially unlocked by drawing the correct pattern on the fingerprint sensor, or fully on providing a biometric match.

Brixton Pound to add NFC

December 19th, 2014

Brixton Pound (B£), a local currency designed to encourage consumers to spend in independent businesses, is to launch an NFC ‘tap and pay’ service in 2015. “The currency will implement contactless payment terminals for B£ businesses and traders, which will further speed and simplify payments,” the organisation says. The service currently lets Brixton residents make payments via Bluetooth beacons or pay-by-text.

Mobile barcode scanning booms

December 17th, 2014

Consumers scanned more than 4.5m barcodes with Scandit-powered mobile shopping apps this Black Friday, the company has revealed, “with some US-based apps experiencing as much as 40 times increase over last year”. Total scan volumes across mobile apps that utilise Scandit “more than doubled year-over-year.”

Iowa to launch mobile driving license

December 17th, 2014

The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) in the US is developing a smartphone-based driver’s license using an app that would co-exist with traditional plastic cards, WSJ reports. How the service will work and when it will be launched remain unclear however, due to concerns surrounding privacy and security. Iowa DOT is now focusing on working out how police and transportation officers will be able to interact with the mobile licenses and on ways to prevent fakes.

Line Pay makes debut

December 17th, 2014

Line Pay, the mobile payments service unveiled in October by Tokyo-based instant messaging service Line, has made its global debut with the release of version 4.8.0 of the Line app. “At the first stage of its release, Line Pay will only support payments on Line Store,” the company explains. “Select Line Pay when paying on Line Store to open the Line Pay service, then simply select a credit card to pay with to complete the purchase.”

Google Wallet adds Touch ID

December 17th, 2014

The iOS version of Google Wallet now enables users to use Touch ID fingerprint verification for “secure and quick access” to the mobile wallet. Google Wallet 8.0 for iOS also lets consumers divide the cost of any transaction through a split the check function.

US consumers trust banks most with card data

December 17th, 2014

Three in four online buyers (76%) are dissatisfied with the strength of credit card and personal information security among retailers with some 72% of respondents saying they trust their own bank the most with credit card data and personally identifiable information, US research from Bizrate Insights reveals. 48% trust PayPal with their payment and personal information, 45% trust Amazon, 21% trust Apple, 12% trust American Express, 18% trust eBay, 12% trust Google and 12% trust none of the above.

Samsung in talks with LoopPay?

December 17th, 2014

Samsung is in talks with mobile payments startup LoopPay with a view to launching a mobile payments system to rival Apple Pay in the US in 2015, “multiple sources” have told Re/code. The service could “allow payment information to be transmitted to the merchant via NFC technology in addition to via LoopPay’s magnetic stripe-mimicking technology.”

Apple Pay hits 90% of credit cards by volume

December 16th, 2014

Apple Pay has signed up support from “dozens more banks, retail stores and start-ups”, with new additions including SunTrust, Barclaycard, USAA, TD Bank North America, Commerce Bank and Amway Center — the home of the Orlando Magic basketball team —  The New York Times reports. Including the recent sign-ups, Apple says it now supports cards that represent some 90% of the credit card purchase volume in the US.

Alipay extends fingerprint IDs

December 16th, 2014

Alipay has extended its fingerprint log-in capability for the Alipay Wallet to iPhone users, China Daily reports. The function is also available to users of Huawei’s Ascend Mate 7 handset and was first demonstrated at a conference in Beijing in October.

Suncorp to offer NFC payments

December 16th, 2014

Australia’s Suncorp Bank is to make NFC payments available to customers on select Android devices in 2015, Computerworld Australia reports. The bank also plans to support Apple Pay as soon as the mobile payments service becomes available in the country. “Over the past 12 months, consumer demand for NFC mobile technology from our customer base has increased significantly due to improve awareness and device availability,” Suncorp says.

Half of Brits interested in mobile payments

December 15th, 2014

Almost one in two (47%) UK consumers are interested in mobile payments, research from Oxygen8 has found, with 11% saying they would like to use their mobile phone only, replacing the use of credit and debit cards altogether. 25% of respondents have purchased an item on eBay using their mobile device, 14% have paid bills, 10% have purchased clothes via an app and 9% have bought groceries via an app, the survey found.

Google Wallet 8.0 now available

December 15th, 2014

Version 8.0 of Google Wallet is now available to download from Google Play in the US. “The latest version of Google Wallet for Android makes it easier to manage your gift cards and loyalty programs in one, centralised location,” Google says.

Apple store adds PayPal

December 15th, 2014

PayPal is now available as a payment option in Apple’s online retail store for US and UK shoppers having previously only been available as a payment option in Apple’s app and content stores, Re/code reports. Apple is also promoting PayPal Credit, a service that lets shoppers pay for an item over up to 18 months with no interest.

TI offers NFC sensors

December 12th, 2014

Texas Instruments has introduced an integrated NFC sensor transponder that combines an ISO 15693 compliant NFC interface with a programmable microcontroller, non-volatile FRAM, an analog-to-digital converter and SPI and I2C interface. Aimed at industrial, medical, wearables and internet of things (IoT) applications, the RF430FRL15xH will enable developers to “design products that require an analog or digital interface, data-logging capabilities and data transfers to an NFC-enabled reader.”

SIMalliance updates OMAPI

December 10th, 2014

SIMalliance has published version 3.0 of its Open Mobile API Specification, bringing with it support for “every type of smartphone OS globally”. The specification sets out a standard way for mobile applications to access different secure elements — including SIM-based and embedded SEs —  within a mobile device and is currently implemented in more than 150 models of Android NFC smartphone.

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