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Archive: News in brief

Tappr gets $2m for NFC payments

November 6th, 2013

Australian startup Tappr has raised A$2m in seed funding for an NFC payments service that is due to launch in early 2014. Tappr’s Nero app will enable consumers to make payments using a mobile wallet and merchants will be able to accept payments via Juvo, an NFC receiver that plugs into the audio jack of a smartphone or tablet.

CIBC adds Q10 NFC payments

November 4th, 2013

Canadian Bank CIBC has extended availability of its NFC payments service to BlackBerry Q10 owners. The service was first rolled out in November 2012 and expanded to include support for BlackBerry 10 phones in October 2013. Consumers must also have a Suretap NFC SIM from telco Rogers Communications to make NFC payments.

NFC Forum certifies ACS reader

November 4th, 2013

Advanced Card Systems has received NFC Forum certification for its ACR1252U USB NFC reader. “It is another ACS milestone and a proof of our R&D efforts devoted to NFC technology,” says the company’s Gilbert Leung. Engineering samples will be available at the end of 2013.

BA pilots NFC bag tags

November 4th, 2013

British Airways has begun testing a reusable digital luggage tag that contains an e-ink display and can be updated via NFC with new flight information each time a passenger travels. Nokia Lumia handsets are being used by Microsoft employees during the one month trial at Heathrow Terminal 5. All smartphones will be supported when the service goes live, BA says.

Capital adds NFC to signage

November 4th, 2013

Digital signage software specialist Capital Networks has added NFC to its Audience for Android digital signage solution, an entry-level content management and display system for businesses entering the digital signage market. NFC will be used to allow consumers to get information by tapping their NFC phone to automatically open a web page linked to the advertised product.

Google posts HCE guide

November 1st, 2013

A detailed guide to Android 4.4 KitKat’s support for Host Card Emulation (HCE), which enables NFC payments and other secure services to be delivered without the use of a secure element, is now available on the Android Developers website. The host-based card emulation guide explains how HCE works on Android devices and how developers can create apps that use the technique.

Bankmecu tests NFC stickers

October 30th, 2013

Australia’s Bankmecu and card issuer Cuscal have completed an NFC payment sticker trial, enabling consumers to make contactless payments at Visa payWave terminals using a smart sticker stuck to their phone. Bankmecu now plans to further test the service before launching it to its wider cardholder base in the next few months. People’s Choice Credit Union will also test the service and Cuscal says it is in discussions with additional clients.

UK gov funds NFC ticketing

October 30th, 2013

The UK Government’s Technology Strategy Board is providing a £1.1m grant to a consortium led by Tedipay that is developing MultiPass, a smart ticketing service designed to offer a single, nationwide travel pass that will always charge travellers the lowest possible fare. Multipass will be available on NFC phones and also allow passengers to make payments for snacks and drinks, car parking and other travel-related products and services.

Comic Con issues NFC badges

October 30th, 2013

Traditional tickets were replaced with NFC badges at this year’s New York Comic Con and staff were provided with Google Nexus 7 NFC tablets that could be used to check them. The system, supplied by event ticketing specialist ShowClix, “was the most successful entry experience in the history of New York Comic Con,” said event organiser ReedPop’s Lance Fensterman.

Mad Catz adds NFC keyboard

October 30th, 2013

Computer peripherals manufacturer Mad Catz has announced the Strike M Mobile Keyboard, a wireless gaming keyboard that includes NFC to make it easy for gamers to connect it to NFC-enabled laptops and other mobile devices. The keyboard can also be paired to non-NFC hardware via Bluetooth, and will be available in black, white and red before the end of 2013.

NFC on the cards for Moonga

October 30th, 2013

Software developer Everdreamsoft is seeking US$75,000 in crowdfunding to produce physical versions of its Moonga online trading cards, enabling gamers to continue earning online points offline. Moonga “connected cards” will contain an NFC tag that can be used to store the history of a card, encourage local interactions with other gamers by offering team benefits and allow players to track their games by tapping a card to their smartphones. The Kickstarter funding drive closes on 22 November.

Adelaide Airport adds NFC ads

October 30th, 2013

NFC capabilities are to be added to indoor and outdoor digital signage at Adelaide Airport’s domestic and international terminals. The move is part of an A$2.2m contract signed by the Australian airport with out-of-home media specialist Ooh! Media and work is due to be completed by the end of 2013.

ZTE adds rugged NFC handset

October 30th, 2013

Smartphone manufacturer ZTE has announced a durable Android NFC handset designed for use in “challenging environments” such as security, transportation, factories and logistics. The IP67-rated ZTE Gota GH800 runs Android 4.1, has a 4-inch touchscreen and offers 4G LTE connectivity along with a range of features suited to use in the field.

Hike offers NFC phones

October 30th, 2013

Chinese smartphone maker Hike Mobile has released two NFC smartphones, the X1 and the X1D. Both devices run the company’s custom version of Android 4.2, cost CNY1,999 (US$328) and feature a 5-inch full HD display with 13 megapixel rear camera, a 1.5GHz quad-core processor with 2GB RAM and 32GB of internal storage. The X1D also offers dual SIM support.

Logitech adds NFC phone stand

October 30th, 2013

Logitech has introduced a portable speakerphone/smartphone stand that makes use of NFC pairing to enable business travellers to quickly and easily set up hands free audio and video calls. The P710e is shipping now for US$169.99.

Xiaomi Mi3 uses Oberthur SE

October 29th, 2013

Chinese smartphone manufacturer Xiaomi has included Oberthur Technologies’ Pearl embedded secure element in its Mi3 handset — a device which sold 100,000 units in under 90 seconds when it became available earlier this month. The Pearl is certified for NFC payments by Visa, MasterCard and Google and is undergoing certification by China UnionPay. It also supports strong authentication, transit, access and loyalty applications.

Jetco to launch NFC in Hong Kong

October 24th, 2013

Hong Kong ATM network provider Jetco is to offer NFC payments using an add-on device that plugs into the headphone jack of a standard smartphone, the South China Morning Post reports. Five of Jetco’s thirty member banks have signed up for the service and Bank of China (Hong Kong) is set to be the first to pilot the platform later this year, alongside its existing BOC e-Wallet NFC service.

TuneIn Radio adds NFC

October 23rd, 2013

TuneIn has updated the Windows Phone 8 version of its TuneIn Radio app, enabling NFC phone users to share their favourite playlists via NFC. TuneIn offers music, sports and news from more than 70,000 AM, FM and internet radio stations around the world.

Android NFC app reads passports

October 23rd, 2013

IT security firm Dexlab has released eCL0WN, an app that can read and clone data from an electronic passport using an Android 2.3+ NFC device. eCl0wn can read and decrypt the passport data, display details including the holder’s picture, and write that data to an e-passport emulator or the phone’s internal storage.

SK C&C ships 6m NFC Sims

October 23rd, 2013

Korea’s SK C&C has shipped its six millionth NFC SIM card and is now to make the product available in the US. “Since 2011, SK C&C has been shipping NFC SIMs customized to carrier requirements” says SK C&C USA’s Jean-Louis Carrara.

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