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    Archive: News in brief

    Apple Pay gets positive start in Taiwan

    April 10th, 2017

    Some 415,000 cards were registered to Apple Pay two days after it launched in Taiwan in March 2017, the Financial Supervisory Commission has revealed. Taiwan Mobile Payment Co’s (TWMP) T Wallet+ host card emulation (HCE) service — which launched in August 2016 — “pales in comparison at only 33,000,” The China Post reports. “T Wallet+ actually has double the number of partnering banks in comparison with Apple Pay — the former having 14 and the latter seven.”

    PayPal and Visa extend payments deal to Asia Pacific

    April 6th, 2017

    PayPal users across Asia Pacific will soon be able to make in-store NFC mobile payments in all Visa supporting locations, following an announcement by PayPal and Visa that they are to expand their US payments agreement to the region. The move will see PayPal making use of the Visa Digital Enablement Program (VDEP) to tokenize payments made in-store by its customers on a mobile phone or connected device.

    Deutsche Bank customers get HCE mobile payments

    April 5th, 2017

    Customers of Deutsche Bank in Germany can now make host card emulation (HCE) based mobile payments using their Mastercard credit or debit card through the bank’s Deutsche Bank Mobile app. “Customers who have the app loaded on their Android smartphone (version 4.4 and above) can make cashless payments worldwide at 6m Mastercard acceptance points,” Deutsche Bank says. The bank has approximately 300,000 customers with a Mastercard and an Android smartphone.

    WhatsApp to launch UPI-based payments in India?

    April 5th, 2017

    Messaging app WhatsApp is exploring India’s Unified Payments Interface (UPI) platform “among other payment modes” for launching a P2P mobile payment service in the country. “For WhatsApp, which has 200m users in India, integrating UPI instead of building its own wallet would likely be a better option given the stricter guidelines for wallets put out by the Reserve Bank of India,” Economic Times reports.

    Samsung Pay opens early access phase in the UAE

    April 4th, 2017

    Samsung Pay has launched an early access program in the UAE with support from Mastercard and Visa and a number of banks including Mashreq Bank, ADCB, Rakbank, Emirates NBD, Standard Chartered and NBAD. The mobile payment service is fully available in 12 markets including South Korea, the US, China, Spain, Singapore, Australia, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Russia, Thailand, Malaysia and, most recently, India. Samsung Pay will also be available for online payments later this year.

    Twint goes live in Switzerland

    April 4th, 2017

    Mobile payment service Twint has been launched in Switzerland, marking the completion of the merger between PostFinance’s Twint and financial infrastructure operator SIX’s Paymit platforms. “Over the coming weeks, the Swiss banks will make their own Twint apps available independently of one another and link up to the system,” Twint says. “The first bank apps (UBS Twint and ZKB Twint) will be released in April.” The launch was expected in January 2017, but was delayed due to the “complexity of the system”, Finews reports.

    Masterpass QR expands to merchants across Sub-Saharan Africa

    March 30th, 2017

    More than 250,000 micro and small businesses across 11 markets in Sub-Saharan Africa will soon be able to accept in-store mobile payments through Mastercard’s Masterpass QR service. Mastercard has partnered with merchant service provider Kopo Kopo and Diamond Trust Bank (DTB) to roll out the service over the next five years. MasterpassQR is also being rolled out to 150,000 merchants in Kenya.

    Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus to support Bluetooth 5

    March 30th, 2017

    Samsung’s new Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus flagship smartphones will be the first on the market to include support for Bluetooth 5.0, The Verge reports. Bluetooth 5 was unveiled in June 2016 and has been designed to “double the speed and quadruple the range” of low energy Bluetooth transmissions. Samsung unveiled its new devices earlier this week.

    HSBC and First Direct join Pay by Bank app

    March 30th, 2017

    UK bank HSBC and its subsidiary First Direct have become the latest to sign up to Pay by Bank, the mobile payments app developed by VocaLink’s Zapp. The banks join Barclays, Bank of Scotland, Halifax and Lloyds Bank. “This widespread support will usher in a new era of ‘digital debit’ mobile payments,” says Pay by Bank app managing director Rajiv Garodia.

    Apple Pay in-store adoption is “growing nicely”

    March 30th, 2017

    Apple Pay adoption at the point of sale is “growing nicely” and is “in-line with growth among other digital payment players” such as Google and Samsung, long-time Apple analyst Gene Munster reveals. “We believe that users are activating Apple Pay on about 30% of new iPhones,” the analyst, who has moved to Loup Ventures from Piper Jaffray, writes in a research note. “In total, we estimate that 13% of the 680m iPhones in use today have activated Apple Pay.”

    Apple details Touch ID and PC-to-phone payment security features

    March 30th, 2017

    A new security white paper on Apple’s iOS 10 provides details about security improvements made to Touch ID as well as insight into the security infrastructure behind a feature of the operating system that makes it possible for developers to enable Apple Pay users to start a payment on a computer and finish it on their phone, Techcrunch reports.

    Square arrives in the UK

    March 28th, 2017

    Mobile POS provider Square has launched in the UK. “Whether you have a traditional brick-and-mortar shop or a mobile or online business, you can use Square Reader to take chip and PIN cards, contactless cards and mobile payments like Apple Pay and Android Pay anywhere you are doing business,” the company writes in a blog post. Square is now available in the UK, US, Canada, Japan and Australia.

    Boston Fed calls for clearer value proposition to encourage mobile payments

    March 28th, 2017

    The value proposition for using mobile payments must be clearly stated to customers in order to change their behaviour from using plastic cards to mobile phones, says the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston following the completion of a research project that tested four mobile wallet models including NFC and QR codes. “While security issues remain a major barrier to mass mobile payment adoption and are being addressed by the industry, general consumer adoption is the real hurdle,” the bank says.

    Apple Pay to launch in Taiwan on March 29?

    March 28th, 2017

    Apple Pay will launch in Taiwan on March 29 with support from Cathay United Bank, CTBC Bank, E Sun Commercial Bank, Standard Chartered Bank, Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank, Taishin International Bank and Union Bank of Taiwan, according to Focus Taiwan. The company unveiled its plans to launch the mobile payment service in Taiwan in February 2017, when Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed that the number of Apple Pay users has more than tripled over the past year.

    Android Pay to launch in Korea in May?

    March 27th, 2017

    Android Pay will launch in Korea in May with support from Shinhan Card, Hyundai Card, Lotte Card and Hana Card, according to ETNews. “The release target was set in May,” the publication reports. “The card companies will sign the contract soon after the internal review.” Reports that Android Pay was heading to Korea emerged in February 2017.

    Apple Pay struggles in China in the face of tough competition

    March 27th, 2017

    Apple Pay is “struggling” in China due in part to a minority smartphone market share and consumers being “far more accustomed” to competing services such as Alipay and Tencent’s WeChat Pay. “I don’t think Apple Pay can achieve the same market share as Alipay or WeChat Pay in the foreseeable future,” Morningstar Investment Service analyst Marie Sun told Bloomberg. “Personally, I don’t see any benefits to switching myself.” Apple Pay launched in China in February 2016.

    Ted Baker and Mondaine to add NFC payments to watches

    March 27th, 2017

    Fashion brand Ted Baker and Swiss luxury watchmaker Mondaine are to integrate NFC payments into a range of watches to enable customers to make payments using technology supplied by Tappy Technologies, which has also partnered with Barclaycard to offer bPay contactless payment technology in the UK. Tappy is also integrating NFC payments into watches supplied by Technos and Saga as well as smartphone brand Meizu’s Newatch. Mondaine began adding NFC payments to watches in February 2016.

    US Payments Forum offers card-not-present fraud advice

    March 24th, 2017

    The US Payments Forum has published a survey of card-not-present (CNP) fraud worldwide to help the US payments industry assemble “layered, effective and systematic” mitigation strategies. “While many attribute the rise in CNP fraud seen in other countries to the implementation of EMV chip technology, there are other factors such as the rapid growth of online sales and the fact that fraud prevention tools have not been fully adopted and implemented by all stakeholders,” says the trade body’s Randy Vanderhoof.

    Android O to offer autofill for payments

    March 23rd, 2017

    The next version of Google’s Android operating system will include a new API that enables mobile apps to add autofill services which automatically enter a user’s passwords, payment details and other personal information. “Android O makes filling forms, such as account and credit card forms, easier with the introduction of the Autofill Framework,” Google says. “The Autofill Framework manages the communication between the app and an autofill service.”

    Wells Fargo moves forward with ATM mobile withdrawal plans

    March 22nd, 2017

    US bank Wells Fargo will become the first in the country to upgrade its entire network of ATMs with mobile withdrawal functionality next week, as the bank prepares to roll out the service to 13,000 machines. “Customers would get unique eight-digit codes from their Wells Fargo smartphone app and enter the code into the ATM along with their PIN number,” CBS San Francisco reports. The bank will also upgrade its ATMs with NFC technology “later this year,” the publication adds.

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