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    Archive: Technology

    Apple buys facial recognition startup

    February 20th, 2017

    Apple has acquired RealFace, an Israel-based facial recognition technology startup, in a deal estimated to be “several million dollars,” Israeli financial website Calcalist reports. RealFace uses deep learning to “detect a wide variety of elements in images and recognize faces of people with a fairly high degree of accuracy”.

    EMV card shipments grow less than 1% in 2016

    February 20th, 2017

    Global EMV payment card shipments increased by less than 1% year-on-year in 2016, reaching nearly 3bn, ABI Research says. “Between 2012 and 2015, the market became accustomed to annual growth rates in the 20% to 35% range, as first China and then the US began their respective migration programs,” the research firm adds. “But, as overstocking paired with near saturation points hit both countries simultaneously, orders significantly slowed.”

    New iPhone to feature 3D laser facial recognition scanner?

    February 17th, 2017

    Apple’s iPhone 7S, 7S Plus and 8 will come with a 3D laser scanner for facial recognition later this year to replace the Touch ID fingerprint scanner, JPMorgan analyst Rod Hall has told MacRumors. He says the switch to facial recognition will “potentially be more secure than Touch ID, which could increase Apple Pay adoption among banks and merchants”.

    Smart home owners can ask Alexa to unlock front door

    February 16th, 2017

    Homeowners with smart home company August’s Smart Lock system are now able to ask an Amazon Alexa-enabled device to unlock their front door using their voice and a secure voice PIN of four to 12 digits. Users “can begin using Alexa by enabling the August Smart Lock skill within the Alexa app”, the firm says. August will “also soon integrate with” Google Assistant, Forbes reports.

    What’s New in Payments: Leading international innovators explain the latest payments trends and technologies in free special report

    February 16th, 2017

    Senior executives from Starbucks, Pizza Hut, Barclaycard, Swatch and CaixaBank are among 12 leading payments innovators who have contributed to What’s New in Payments, a 104-page special report that is now available to download free… More

    Apple patent shows touchscreen fingerprint scanner

    February 15th, 2017

    A patent shows Apple is working on a “micro-LED active matrix display panel” that would allow a fingerprint scanner to be integrated into an iPhone touchscreen and could eventually replace the current Touch ID button. “The ability to detect an object’s surface profile while the display panel is not emitting visible light enables the display panel to detect a user’s fingerprint to unlock a mobile device when the display panel appears to be off,” the application says.

    Finnish distiller adds NFC tags to gin bottles

    February 14th, 2017

    Finnish distiller Northern Lights Spirits (NLS) is to include NFC tags on premium Kalevala Gin bottles, allowing it to “instantly deliver authentication messages, brand stories, promotional offers, product news and other relevant content” to customers. The tags will “contribute significantly to consumer loyalty and the overall popularity of Kalevala Gin”, Moritz Wüstenberg, managing director at NLS, says.

    Wearable security market to reach $5.74bn by 2021

    February 14th, 2017

    The global wearable security devices market is expected to reach US$5.74bn by 2021, Technavio research shows. The market will grow between 2017 and 2021 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of “close to 19% during the forecast period,” the company says. “The increased adoption of Internet of Things to manage the physical assets of an organisation is one of the key drivers of the market.”

     

    NXP unveils IoT security platform

    February 14th, 2017

    PARTNER NEWS: NXP has unveiled a platform designed to enable developers of Internet of Things equipment to “easily build” secure and trusted systems. QorlQ “provides a complete set of hardware, software and process capabilities to embed security and trust into every aspect of a product’s life cycle,” the company says.

    PCI offers guidance for multi-factor authentication

    February 13th, 2017

    The PCI Security Standards Council (PCI) has issued guidance on the “proper use” of multi-factor authentication (MFA) for preventing unauthorised access to computers and systems that process payment transactions. The Multi-Factor Authentication Information Supplement will “help organisations using, evaluating or upgrading an MFA solution understand how to implement it properly and securely,” says PCI’s Troy Leach.

    Swatch to build OS for smartwatches

    February 10th, 2017

    Swiss watchmaker Swatch is working on its own operating system for smartwatches, built in conjunction with research and technology provider CSEM. “It will be designed especially for the needs of small connected objects and, naturally, first and foremost for watches,” Swatch says. “We are aiming to launch the first products by the end of 2018.”

    Schiphol Airport tests facial recognition to speed up boarding

    February 10th, 2017

    Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport has begun a three-month trial of facial recognition technology at one of its boarding gates. Passengers register by having their faces, passports and boarding passes scanned, and then use a separate biometric gate to board their plane. Schiphol and Dutch airline KLM say the ultimate goal is “making the boarding process as easy and quick as possible for passengers”.

    Bus operator reports QR and NFC adoption stats

    February 9th, 2017

    Bus passengers in the UK county of West Yorkshire are using QR codes and NFC at bus stops 10,000 times every week to retrieve travel information. West Yorkshire Combined Authority fitted QR codes and NFC tags on all of the county’s 14,500 bus stops in October 2015. “In 2016, passengers used QR codes and NFC chips over 400,000 times,” the organisation says.

    ‘World first’ plastic NFC tag opens up new possibilities for NFC deployments

    February 8th, 2017

    Global playing card and board game producer Cartamundi, nanoelectronics research centre Imec and Holst Centre — an initiative set up by Imec and Dutch research institute TNO — have unveiled a “world first” NFC tag… More

    GoCardless warns customers after burglary

    February 7th, 2017

    Fintech startup GoCardless has contacted customers to warn of possible data loss after a break-in at its London offices in January. The company, a gateway for direct debit payments taken from consumers’ bank accounts, says it lost 19 password-protected laptops in the raid. “All of our payment processing systems are secure, remain uncompromised and were unaffected by the burglary,” GoCardless says.

    Eight in 10 US consumers would prefer an Amazon Go automated store to traditional shopping

    February 7th, 2017

    Some 84% of US consumers say they would enjoy shopping at an Amazon Go automated store more than a traditional grocery store, but a fifth think they would lose out on traditional shopping experiences by… More

    Bluetooth rail ticketing service to include biometrics?

    February 7th, 2017

    Fingerprint and iris scanning technology “could eventually” be incorporated into a Bluetooth and geolocation-based ticketing service to be piloted by UK rail firm Chiltern Railways in July 2017. The proposal from Rail Delivery Group aims to help in “reducing delays and increasing the number of passengers through the gates at busy times”.

    Chrome 56 adds BLE connectivity to web apps

    February 7th, 2017

    Consumers can now communicate with nearby Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices through web apps using Google’s Chrome 56 update for Android. “With Chrome 56, your web apps can communicate with nearby BLE devices in a secure and private manner using the Web Bluetooth API,” Google’s Pete LePage says in a blogpost. He adds this can also be combined with physical web beacons to control nearby devices. Google began supporting the physical web in its Chrome browser in February 2015.

    Cities will launch own digital currencies ‘within 10 years’

    February 7th, 2017

    Cities will begin separating from their country’s national currency to launch their own digital money within 10 years, according to the CEO of blockchain-based financial network Bluzelle. “Blockchain and digital currencies make now the right time for a city to adopt its own currency,” Pavel Bains writes in an opinion piece published by CoinDesk.

    Music fans pay for drinks with finger veins

    February 7th, 2017

    Customers at London music venue Proud Camden can now pay for orders using Fingopay finger vein technology and get £10 cashback to spend on their next visit. “We rely heavily on speed of service,” says venue founder Alex Proud. “As such we need to avoid time-consuming payment problems.”

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