Saturday 28 November 2015 | RSS


    Archive: News in brief

    NBO first to pilot contactless in Oman

    June 9th, 2015

    National Bank of Oman (NBO) has become the first in the country to launch a contactless card pilot, in partnership with MasterCard. “The new scheme will allow customers to make payments for small ticket items at the checkout without the need to enter a PIN or sign a receipt,” Times of Oman reports. “The cards, using ‘TapNGo’ technology, are identified as NBO Beam cards.”

    Visa Europe to participate in Apple Pay UK launch

    June 8th, 2015

    Visa Europe has confirmed that it will play a part in the the UK launch of Apple Pay and will give debit, credit and reloadable prepaid cardholders access to the payment system. “Visa Europe would like to confirm that it is part of the Apple Pay launch in the UK coming at the beginning of July,” the payment network says. “Further details and information will be shared shortly.” MasterCard revealed last week that it was ready to switch on Apple Pay in Europe.

    Lycos unveils wearables with NFC

    June 8th, 2015

    Internet company Lycos has announced a line of NFC-equipped wearable devices including a ring ($59.99) and a wristband (US$124.99) that tracks the wearer’s physical activity, displays incoming calls and notifications and connects to a smartphone with a tap. The Lycos Life wearables “are primarily being pitched as devices that can be used to replace your password, using NFC to unlock your phone when they’re nearby,” The Verge reports.

    Google files contact lens authentication patent

    June 8th, 2015

    Google has filed a patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office that describes a contact lens which collects reflected light through sensors to assemble an image of the iris that is then matched against a stored image to authenticate the wearer. “In various implementations, the contact lens can be employed in systems and/or methods associated with authentication and identification,” the patent says.

    Brain waves could replace passwords

    June 8th, 2015

    Brain waves could be used to verify a person’s identity in the future, researchers from Binghamton University have demonstrated in a study published in academic journal Neurocomputing. Using a sample of 45 volunteers and a list of 75 acronyms, the ‘Brainprint’ study found that participants’ brains reacted differently to each acronym, enough that a computer system identified each person with 94% accuracy.

    Dutch banks plan instant payments

    June 8th, 2015

    Dutch banks have laid out plans to facilitate instant payments within four years, with a view to creating a “new payment infrastructure” that would transfer payments within five seconds. “The project will be carried out under the aegis of the Dutch Payments Association, which, together with the banks, will further discuss and work out the vision and roadmap with users in the second half of this year,” De Nederlandsche Bank says.

    Google misses out on transaction fee revenues

    June 8th, 2015

    Google won’t earn any transaction fees from credit card issuers for Android Pay, unlike Apple which receives 0.15% of the value of each credit card transaction made with Apple Pay,  sources have told The Wall Street Journal.“That is because Visa and MasterCard recently standardised their tokenization card-security service and made it free, preventing payments services from charging fees to issuers,” the newspaper reports.

    Samsung smartwatches to support Samsung Pay?

    June 8th, 2015

    Samsung is planning to offer Samsung Pay mobile payments on the smartwatch devices it is scheduled to launch in the second half of this year. “Samsung would use NFC technology to support mobile payments on the smartwatch,” Reuters reports, citing South Korea’s Electronic Times newspaper. Samsung managing director Park Jin-young hinted that the service may work on its smartwatches during the company’s April 2015 first quarter earnings call.

    Apple Pay to launch in UK this summer?

    June 8th, 2015

    Apple is reported to be planning to launch Apple Pay in the UK this summer, with an announcement expected today at the company’s Worldwide Developer Conference. “The service will be switched on in around two months,” sources told The Telegraph. Apple is also expected to unveil a loyalty program for the mobile payments service at the event.

    UK retailers to go 100% contactless by 2020

    June 5th, 2015

    “From the beginning of next year, any new payment terminal that gets deployed has to accept contactless,” MasterCard’s head of emerging payments products Mike Cowan told attendees at the company’s Future of Payments event in London this week, TechWeek Europe reports. “By 2020, every single terminal will accept contactless,” Cowan adds.

    Less than a quarter of top US retailers accept Apple Pay

    June 5th, 2015

    Fewer than a quarter of the National Retail Federation’s list of the top 100 US retailers are now accepting Apple Pay, with nearly two-thirds saying they will not be accepting it this year and only four saying they have plans to add support in the next 12 months, research conducted by Reuters has found. “Some merchants said they were holding out because they plan to participate in a new mobile payment system to be launched by a coalition of retailers later this year,” reports the news agency.

    TfL clocks up 100m contactless payment journeys

    June 5th, 2015

    Transport for London (TfL) is now processing 1.2m open loop contactless payment transactions every day and is seeing 18,000 new contactless payment cards on a daily basis, with a total of 4m now in use. “We have reached over 100m contactless journeys since it launched across transport in London in September 2014,” the transport operator confirmed to NFC World, up from a total of 12m contactless journeys as of November last year.

    AT&T boss admits mobile payment failure

    June 4th, 2015

    The CEO of AT&T has admitted that the US carrier’s mobile payment efforts have failed in light of the closure of Softcard, the joint venture between it, T-Mobile USA and Verizon. “In the end, we thought we’re probably better off not investing more money in this space,” Ralph De La Vega told Forbes. “It seems like a more natural fit for the OS manufacturer doing those kinds of things. We decided to focus on another part of the business and not continue on the mobile payments area.”

    MasterCard ready to “switch on” Apple Pay in Europe

    June 4th, 2015

    MasterCard is “absolutely ready” to switch on Apple Pay in the UK and Europe and is just waiting for the iPhone maker’s green light. “That’s one of the advantages of doing this on a global platform,” the payment network said during a press briefing covered by International Business Times. “It’s there, it’s switched on, we just have to connect the services at the back end. It takes a couple of days.”

    Gazprombank pilots NFC tickets

    June 4th, 2015

    Russia’s Gazprombank and MasterCard are piloting NFC mobile and contactless card payments for transit fares using PayPass terminals across the K-39 bus route in St Petersburg. “Residents and guests will be able to quickly, easily and securely pay for their fare by bank cards and others devices; mobile phones, watches, key chains, stickers etc,” MasterCard says.

    HID Global brings government IDs to mobile

    June 4th, 2015

    ID card provider HID Global will use its Seos technology platform, which supports both NFC and BLE functionality, to let citizens carry government IDs on smartphones and other mobile devices. “The new offering builds on HID Global’s leadership in secure mobile ID provisioning and the management platforms already deployed in other arenas such as education and hospitality,” the company says.

    Execs look to disrupt payments value chain

    June 4th, 2015

    Nearly half (44%) of payment executives globally cite reducing the number of fee collectors in the payments value chain as their “top opportunity”, ranking higher than targeted offers (41%) and mobile (39%), ACI Worldwide and Ovum reveal. Some 59% are evaluating direct connections with banks to cut reliance on card networks and 85% of banks want closer ties with organisations to reduce costs.

    Apple Pay added to 12 banks

    June 4th, 2015

    Apple has added a further 12 US banks and credit unions to its list of participating financial institutions. In the wake of Google’s unveiling of Android Pay, “Apple is expected to announce enhancements to Apple Pay … including a rewards system,” 9to5mac reports.

    37% of vending payments cashless

    June 4th, 2015

    Cashless payments now account for 37% of all transactions made on vending machines equipped with USA Technologies’ ePort Cashless Payment System, data from the company’s 2015 Cashless Knowledge Base Study has found. There was also a 32% increase in average ticket values when consumers make cashless purchases – including those using mobile wallets – compared to those made with cash.

    Tiny NXP diode to protect NFC chips

    June 3rd, 2015

    PARTNER NEWS: NXP has introduced a component designed to protect NFC chips in mobile devices from voltage spikes. At just 0.6 by 0.3 by 0.3 mm the PESD18VF1BSF is ideal for space constrained applications such as smartphones, says the company. “NFC antennas are integrated into the battery’s cover or the battery itself, and are connected to the IC (integrated circuit) via small contacts on the phone,” explains NXP. “These contacts can act as entry points for ESD (electrostatic discharge) strikes which are potentially hazardous to the NFC controller IC.”

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