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    Archive: News in brief

    Gmail offers Android app money transfer

    March 15th, 2017

    Gmail users in the US can now send and receive money through the email service’s Android mobile app. “Just tap on the attachment icon and choose whether you want to send or request money,” Google says. “Recipients are able to receive or request money right from the email itself — without having to install another payment app.” The service is already available in the US and UK in Gmail’s web-based client.

    Car makers back NFC and Bluetooth for digital keys

    March 15th, 2017

    The Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC) has outlined how technologies such as NFC and Bluetooth can be used for digital car keys in a white paper discussing its Digital Key project — a standardisation effort for digital key adoption. “The guiding principle for using smart devices as car keys is the convenience and ease of use for the consumer,” says the CCC, whose members include General Motors, Volkswagen, Hyundai, Toyota and Honda.

    Vodafone Wallet adds PayPal in the Netherlands

    March 14th, 2017

    Vodafone has added PayPal as a payment option to its NFC-based Vodafone Wallet mobile payment service in the Netherlands. “Vodafone Wallet is the first mobile wallet in the Netherlands which supports PayPal payments,” the carrier says. The roll-out forms part of a European collaboration between Vodafone and PayPal unveiled in February 2016. Vodafone Wallet is also live with PayPal in Spain, Italy and the UK, and launched in Germany last week.

    Industry bodies to standardise management of NFC services

    March 14th, 2017

    Industry bodies ETSI, GlobalPlatform and the NFC Forum are working together to standardise the implementation and management of NFC services “across all technologies and platforms”. The aim is for such services to “successfully coexist within a device and operate as intended”, the organisations say. “For consumers, this clarity brings guarantees that services will work as advertised, regardless of the hosting contactless environment.”

    Boston Fed calls for more education to boost mobile payments

    March 14th, 2017

    The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston says awareness of mobile payments “continues to grow” but “more education for consumers and employees” is needed to achieve mass adoption of mobile and digital wallets. The bank’s call comes after it completed a research project, which saw members of its payment strategies group testing a range of services on iPhones and Android devices for in-store and remote purchases.

    KredoBank launches HCE mobile payments in Ukraine

    March 14th, 2017

    Customers of Ukraine’s KredoBank can now make host card emulation (HCE) based mobile payments by adding Mastercard credit or debit cards to its new KredoPay wallet. KredoPay — available to customers with a device running Android 4.4 KitKat or higher — is the country’s first mobile payments service to use the Mastercard Digital Enablement Service (MDES). Ukraine’s PrivatBank launched its HCE based mobile payments service using the Visa Token Service (VTS) platform in December 2016.

    ST discovery kit speeds time to market for contactless applications

    March 13th, 2017

    PARTNER NEWS: STMicroelectronics has combined its ST25R3911B NFC reader IC and its STM32L476RE microcontroller into a discovery kit designed to accelerate time to market for a wide range of contactless applications, including ticketing, asset tracking, device authentication, sensor data collection and access control. The ST25R3911B-DISCO discovery kit delivers “superior communication range, speed and energy efficiency with simplified design and reduced bill of materials”, ST says.

    JPMorgan Chase to buy MCX payments technology

    March 13th, 2017

    US bank JPMorgan Chase is to acquire the payments technology of US retailer-led consortium MCX to “help expand” the Chase Pay mobile payments service. “Chase executives wanted to acquire the technology to use in lieu of building separate parallel technology to serve non-MCX members,” the bank says. “This will help us get to market faster,” adds Chase Pay’s Jennifer Roberts. MCX was a launch partner of Chase Pay and ended its CurrentC mobile wallet pilot in June 2016.

    Rambus outlines how to build trust in mobile payments

    March 13th, 2017

    PARTNER NEWS: A 13-page e-book which examines how to build consumer confidence in mobile payments is now available to download from the NFC World Knowledge Centre. ‘Enabling an economy of digital trust with mobile payments’ has been produced by Rambus and aims to educate mobile payment providers on how to protect consumers before, during and after transactions take place.

    Samsung Pay to work with budget smartphones in India?

    March 13th, 2017

    Samsung is planning to make Samsung Pay available on its non-premium smartphones in India, including its budget J series models, according to Mashable sources. It is likely that Samsung will make this possible through Samsung Pay Mini, the pared-down version of Samsung Pay unveiled in February 2017. Samsung Pay launched through an early access programme in India last week.

    Royal Bank of Canada adds Siri money transfers

    March 9th, 2017

    Customers of Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) can now send money using Apple’s Siri voice assistant using the latest version of the RBC Mobile iOS app. “Once you give the voice command, the Siri feature will confirm the name from your payee list and the RBC Mobile app automatically debits your chequing account and sends the payment,” the bank says.

    Watchmaker Movado adds Android Pay to new smartwatches

    March 9th, 2017

    A smartwatch collection from watchmaker Movado, powered by Google’s Android Wear 2.0 operating system, is to launch later this year, adding Android Pay capability to five new watches. “Tommy Hilfiger and Hugo Boss, two brands in the Movado Group portfolio, are also partnering with Google,” Movado says. “Collections will launch fall of 2017.” Google unveiled Android Wear 2.0 with support for Android Pay last month.

    Vodafone Germany offers mobile wallet support for PayPal and Visa

    March 8th, 2017

    Vodafone Germany customers can now make NFC mobile payments using PayPal or a Visa credit card installed in the mobile network operator’s Vodafone Wallet. The service went live in Germany in 2014 and customers began testing NFC mobile payments using their Girocard — Germany’s most common debit card — in December. Vodafone Wallet can also be used by Mercedes-Benz E-Class drivers to lock and unlock their car doors.

    Supporting banks named ahead of Apple Pay’s Italy launch

    March 8th, 2017

    Apple Pay is “arriving” in Italy with support from Mastercard, Visa, Carrefour Banca, UniCredit and German payment processor Wirecard’s Boon service, Apple’s website says. No timescale for its launch has been revealed, but reports emerged the mobile payments service was heading to Italy last month, after Italian language instructions for Apple Pay were discovered on Apple’s website. The service launched in Ireland earlier this week.

    South Korea to test NFC credit card authentication for online shopping

    March 8th, 2017

    The Korea Communications Commission (KCC) is to run a pilot allowing consumers to authenticate themselves when making online purchases by tapping their credit card against an NFC smartphone, The Korea Herald reports. “The smartphones can read the personal information,” KCC says. “Credit card firms and credit appraisal firms share the information to prove whether the information is genuine.”

    Singapore to add open APIs to government IDs

    March 7th, 2017

    The Singapore government is to add open APIs, biometrics and encryption to its digital identity system, as well as launch a mobile P2P service to allow money transfers using mobile phone numbers. “Open APIs would allow others, including the private sector, to incorporate the digital identity features into their services,” GovInsider reports. “This means that the ID could potentially be used to access internet banking and other services.”

    India calls for mobile banking for all by 31 March

    March 6th, 2017

    The Indian government has called on banks to provide mobile banking to all customers by the start of April 2017, The Indian Express reports. The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEIT) has issued an advisory to banks to “enable mobile seeding, Aadhaar seeding of bank accounts, along with enablement of mobile banking for all its savings bank customers by 31 March 2017”.

    One in five US smartphone owners use mobile payments in stores

    March 6th, 2017

    Nearly 20% of US smartphone owners have used a mobile payment app at a retail location, research released by Parks Associates shows. “PayPal is overwhelmingly the most used payment app with 63% of payment app users choosing this payment solution, compared to 38% who use the Starbucks app,” the firm says, adding that 80% of consumers are “very satisfied” with the mobile payment apps they use.

    Taiwan banks get Apple Pay approval

    March 6th, 2017

    Seven banks in Taiwan have been granted permission by the Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) to support Apple Pay, Focus Taiwan reports. The banks include Taipei Fubon Commercial Bank, Cathay United Bank, E Sun Commercial Bank, Taishin International Bank, CTBC Bank, First Commercial Bank and Union Bank of Taiwan. The mobile payment service is expected to launch in Taiwan “soon”, according to a recent update on the company’s website.

    Mastercard analyzes social media payments buzz

    March 3rd, 2017

    Digital wallets were the new way to pay most discussed by consumers on social media in 2016, the 2017 edition of the Mastercard Digital Payments Study has found, with consumers around the world also increasingly interested in the payments possibilities of virtual reality, artificial intelligence, smart home assistants, wearables, and the Internet of Things. Biometric security technologies were also a popular topic of conversation.

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