Windows 10 for mobile gets HCE

Windows 10 for mobile with HCE for mobile payments
HCE: A slide outlines support for NFC payments in the mobile version of Windows 10

Microsoft is to introduce support for host card emulation (HCE) payments in the mobile version of its Windows 10 operating system. SIM-based secure elements will continue to be supported with “improved payment integration flows” enabling the two solutions to coexist.

In a presentation looking at wireless networking in the next major release of its Windows operating system, Microsoft’s Winkey Wang briefed delegates at last week’s WinHec Shenzen developer event on a number of NFC features including:

  • NFC payments — there will be new support for HCE and ongoing support for UICC-based secure elements in Windows Mobile;
  • Tap to pair — Windows 10 users will be able to use NFC to initiate WiFi protected setup (WPS) pairing with a WiFi Direct device, and the OS will support screen casting by tapping to a Miracast device;
  • Tap tags to change settings — APIs will allow third party apps to “toggle Bluetooth, WiFi and other settings” with a tap.

Microsoft introduced NFC payments in 2012 with the launch of Windows Phone 8 and went on to make a number of improvements to both the payments and NFC pairing capabilities in WP 8.1.

Windows 10 is designed to use a single core that works across all platforms and is expected to ship in late 2015. Windows 10 Technical Preview tools, an SDK that allows developers to start road testing the Windows universal app platform, has been published this week.

Windows 10 will also include support for face, iris and fingerprint biometric authentication.

A video shown at the conference shows NFC payment with a mobile phone running Windows: