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Archive: News in brief

Google Wallet gets automatic top-ups

November 4th, 2014

An new version of Google Wallet, now available for Android and iOS devices, offers additional ways to add money to a user’s account balance. “With the latest version of Google Wallet you’ll be able to add money automatically to your wallet balance and set up low balance alerts, so that you’ll always have money in your wallet balance when you need it,” product manager Andrew Waterman says.

MCX to open up “in months”

November 4th, 2014

The exclusivity rule that prevents members of MCX from accepting other mobile payments services in their stores will expire in “months, not years,” CEO Dekkers Davidson has told Re/Code. Davidson also “flatly denied that MCX had ordered CVS to turn off Apple Pay,” the report adds.

BitPay adds NFC payments

November 4th, 2014

Bitcoin payment gateway BitPay is to roll out a point-of-sale app to “every mobile market worldwide” that makes it possible for merchants to process Bitcoin payments via NFC. “Bitcoin Checkout is designed to be both fully-featured for solo use and simple to use alongside existing point-of-sale systems,” the company explains. “Merchants can start accepting Bitcoin today — even if their vendor isn’t among the Bitcoin point-of-sale integrations we currently offer.”

Chase and Vantiv to offer Poynt POS

November 4th, 2014

Chase Paymentech and Vantiv, two of the largest payment processors in the US, have signed up to distribute the former head of Google Wallet’s new Poynt POS terminal to their merchant bases. The device, unveiled by Osama Bedier’s startup last week, supports magnetic stripe, EMV, NFC, QR codes and Bluetooth beacon technology.

Apple Pay contract leaked

November 4th, 2014

The full 19-page contract that banks wishing to offer Apple Pay to their cardholders must sign in order to take part has been leaked to Digital Transactions. Among the fees and obligations set out in the contract banks agree to make at least 95% of their network-branded cards available to the wallet, to submit in-depth accounting reports twice a year and to pay a 0.15% commission to Apple. The contract also reveals that fees due to Apple will be collected on the iPhone maker’s behalf by Visa and MasterCard.

Target includes Apple Pay in mobile app

November 4th, 2014

MCX member Target has integrated Apple Pay into its mobile app but is not accepting payments via Apple Pay in its stores, the retailer has told NFC World+. “We are accepting Apple Pay for online purchases made in the Target app,” the merchant explained. “Our point-of-sale terminals are not NFC-enabled.” A group of the company’s headquarters employees have been testing the MCX CurrentC mobile payment app in a number of stores since October, Target added.

Judge rules on fingerprint-locked smartphones

November 4th, 2014

A Virginia Circuit Court judge has ruled that police officers cannot force criminal suspects to divulge mobile phone passwords but they can force them to unlock their phone with a fingerprint scanner, WSJ reports. “The Fifth Amendment to the US Constitution gives people the right to avoid self-incrimination. That involves divulging secret passwords,” the article says. “But, providing fingerprints and other biometric information is considered outside the protection of the Fifth Amendment.”

Valyou goes live across Norway

November 4th, 2014

The NFC mobile wallet solution developed by mobile network operator Telenor and banking group DNB has launched nationwide across Norway. The first payment card available in the Valyou wallet, which was first detailed at Mobile World Congress 2013, is a Visa Paywave card issued by DNB. Card issuers and banks including SpareBank1, Skandiabanken, Ya Bank, Fana Sparebank and EnterCard will join the Valyou wallet in 2015.

Aislelabs compares beacons

November 3rd, 2014

Toronto-based in-store marketing specialist Aislelabs has published an online comparison examining Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacon hardware from 16 different vendors including Estimote, Kontakt and Gimbal. “Over the past three months, we have stress tested the beacons under many conditions, examining every aspect of them,” the company says. “This is the first and most comprehensive report of its kind.”

Apple Pay arrives at more US banks

November 3rd, 2014

A second wave of banks are now going live with their Apple Pay deployments, MacRumours reports, with customers of US Bank, PNC Bank, USAA, Navy Federal Credit Union, Barclaycard, M&T Bank, Regions Bank, Renasant Bank, Keesler Federal Credit Union and Zions Bank all reporting that they are now able to use the NFC mobile payments service.

40% of North Americans use mobile payments

November 3rd, 2014

40% of US and Canadian consumers have now used their smartphone to make a payment at a merchant location, up from 16% two years ago, according to Accenture’s 2014 North America Consumer Payments Survey. Millennials (52%) and high-income consumers (55%) are the most “avid adopters” of mobile payments, research based on responses from 4,000 consumers revealed.

BKM adds Google Glass payment

November 3rd, 2014

Turkish card payment system operator BKM has begun testing payments with Google Glass through its BKM Express digital wallet solution. “Existing members will access their digital wallets and pay for goods and services by operating the BKM Express Google Glass application and using simple voice commands,” the company says.

BBVA adopts Dwolla for faster payments

November 3rd, 2014

US bank BBVA Compass has joined up with Dwolla to offer real-time payments to its account holders for US$0.25 per transaction. Transactions valued at under $10 are free of charge. “This partnership is a great example of how Dwolla’s existing real-time payments system can work together with financial institutions to provide a platform for innovation, revenue and relevancy,” Dwolla’s Jordan Lampe says.

Amex adds tokens and HCE

November 3rd, 2014

American Express has announced the US launch of American Express Token Service, a suite of solutions enabling traditional card account numbers to be replaced with tokens for mobile, online, in-store and NFC payments. Network specifications for host card emulation (HCE) are now also available globally, says Amex, providing “card-issuing partners with additional security options and solutions for payments made with mobile NFC-enabled devices that support Android OS KitKat.”

Fresh & Easy tests ATM rewards

November 3rd, 2014

Seventeen Fresh & Easy stores in Phoenix are piloting new machines from in-store ATM operator Cardtronics that offer customers discounts they can apply to store purchases by scanning a QR code on their cash withdrawal receipt using a smartphone running the company’s AllTM app. “Consumers still get quick and easy access to their cash, but now we’re helping them make the most of that cash by adding exclusive in-store discounts and money-saving offers they can access through their mobile device”, says chief marketing officer Tom Pierce.

60% of consumers will share data with stores

October 31st, 2014

A majority of Americans (60%) would be comfortable divulging information about themselves anonymously to their favourite stores, a new survey from Wearables.com and The Center for Generational Kinetics reveals. A further 56% would be happy to divulge information to a product brand and 46% would be happy to share their information with an app. 18% of respondents would also provide information to receive notifications of the real-time location of their friends.

Bedier unveils Poynt POS

October 31st, 2014

The former head of Google Wallet has unveiled a payment terminal supporting mag stripe, EMV, NFC, QR codes and beacon technology with no add-ons or dongles needed. Poynt is both a stylish POS terminal and the name of the startup behind it. “We wanted to make sure this device would keep up with the rapidly changing payments landscape,” says Osama Bedier. “We call upon banks and developers to join us in this mission to do for merchants what smartphones have done for consumers — usher in a new chapter of commerce.”

Kili puts mPOS in a chip

October 31st, 2014

Payment processing solutions provider Kili Technology has unveiled a line of solution-on-a-chip processors that “allow designers to quickly bring to market certifiable mobile point-of-sale terminals that support all modes of payment including magnetic stripe, EMV contact and EMV contactless (via NFC) with the highest levels of security in the industry.” The processors go into production early in 2015.

Charity picks up contactless pennies

October 31st, 2014

The Mayor’s Fund for London has launched Penny for London, a service that automatically collects small charitable donations when commuters use their contactless cards to pay for journeys on the Transport for London (TfL) network. “Users can decide how much they want to give, from one penny to 10 pence,” partner Barclaycard says. “They can keep track of their giving on the Penny for London website and amend or cap their donation preferences whenever they like.”

Football fans get BLE promos

October 31st, 2014

UK Football League sponsor Sky Bet has installed Bluetooth beacons at Elland Road, Leeds and the New York Stadium, Rotherham to send offers to football fans as part of a pilot project that could be rolled out to other locations across the country. “The feedback from both clubs has been encouraging and, although this technology is still very new, the potential is enormous,” says the online sports betting firm’s Andrew Walton.

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