ACCC to question Apple on Westpac chat app payments ban — Australian Financial Review — “Technology giant Apple’s controversial decision to order Westpac Banking Corporation to disable a mobile banking feature that let customers make payments in chat apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger has caught the attention of Australia’s competition watchdog, amid concerns it could be attempting to remove rivals to its own upcoming service.” 


Safaricom to upgrade M-Pesa to new platform — Safaricom — “Following the upgrade, M-Pesa customers are set to benefit from an increase in the number of partners offering their services on the enhanced M-Pesa platform. This will be made possible through a new set of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) that will simplify the process of integration into M-Pesa, cutting down the time it takes from weeks to a few days, or even hours.” 


Survey finds consumers view contactless shopping as both ‘cool’ and ‘creepy’

Rich Relevance

A survey of consumer attitudes to emerging technologies has found that the majority of both US and European consumers now believe that using fingerprint scanning to pay for purchases is ‘cool’ — but UK and European consumers are divided on the idea of contactless shopping services like Amazon Go, with 40% considering the technology to be ‘cool’ and 31% seeing it as ‘creepy’. More


There’s now an Apple Pay smart debit card for kids — 9to5Mac — “With Greenlight, the money you give your child is divided into two categories: money they can spend anywhere, and money they can spend only at a store (or a kind of store) you’ve approved in advance… Greenlight is also turning on Apple Pay support for kids who can add the smart debit card to Apple’s Wallet service on the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, and Mac.” 


Danske Bank launches digital pocket money — Danske Bank — “In the pocket money app, children can see when their pocket money is paid into their account and how their savings develop, while parents can use Mobile Banking to transfer money and keep an eye on their children’s pocket money… The solution includes a pocket money card, which can be used in ATMs, for payment in stores or online, if the parents allow this.” 


BBVA brings Alipay to Spain — BBVA — “BBVA will integrate Alipay into the bank’s Smartpay service, which turns a cell phone into a means of payment… Stores already using the service simply need to update the Smartpay app to be able to accept payments with Alipay. BBVA is also working with the large chain stores in Spain to prepare them to accept payments with Alipay as early as possible.” 


Macau’s ATMs are using facial recognition to help follow the money — Bloomberg — “Chinese bettors withdrawing money from some ATMs in Macau need to do more than punch in their PIN code. They also have to stare into a camera for six seconds so facial-recognition software can verify their identity and help monitor transactions… China UnionPay Co’s network is the first to use the software, which will be installed in all the city’s 1,200 cash dispensers.” 



A biometric ring could replace your passwords, cards and keys — Engadget — “With a fingerprint sensor on the inside, it can confirm that you’re the authorized user. Then, you slide on the ring, and an onboard IR optical sensor makes sure the device is still on your finger. As long as you have not taken it off, you can authorize transactions with a tap of your hand… Token transmits the authentication signal over NFC in most situations.” 





Sydney man has Opal card implanted into hand to make catching public transport easier — ABC News — “Bio-hacker Meow-Ludo Disco Gamma Meow-Meow, his legal name, had the Opal near-field communication (NFC) chip cut down and encased in bio-compatible plastic, measuring 1 millimetre by 6 millimetres. He then had the device implanted just beneath the skin on the side of his left hand. “It gives me an ability that not everyone else has, so if someone stole my wallet I could still get home,” he said.” 


Beijing subway launches smartphone version of travel card — ECNS — “Starting Monday, subway travelers in the Chinese capital with NFC-enabled phones can leave their physical travel card at home and use their smartphone instead, Beijing Municipal Administration and Communications Card (BMAC) said… Beijing subway said the mobile pass function does not support iPhone because of Apple’s restrictions.” 


Urban Airship analysis of retailers’ mobile wallet coupons and loyalty cards reveals widespread peer-to-peer sharing — Urban Airship — “Analysis of more than one million Apple Wallet coupons and loyalty cards of major retail brands shows that for every mobile wallet pass a customer installs, it is shared and added to 3.3 other mobile devices on average… More than three-quarters of retailers’ installed passes were the result of sharing versus being created and distributed through their marketing channels.” 


Bahrain to launch national e-wallet on July 4 — Trade Arabia — “The national e-wallet is a joint initiative of the Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) and Benefit and a first-of-its-kind project in the kingdom. It will enable instant payments via smartphones and also facilitate the collection of payments electronically through debit, credit and prepaid cards and online bank accounts, for online and in-store purchases.” 


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