Apple Card pilot expands to ‘thousands of retail workers’

Apple expands Goldman credit card test to thousands of retail workers — Bloomberg — “The Cupertino, California-based company this week launched an internal beta program for the Apple Card with its retail workers, according to people familiar with the initiative. The move marks the first major trial for the card, which has been used for several weeks by a far smaller set of Apple corporate and Goldman Sachs employees.”



Google turns Android phones into Fido security keys

The ultimate account security is now in your pocket — Google — “We consider security keys based on Fido standards, like our Titan Security Key, to be the strongest, most phishing-resistant method of 2SV [Two-step verification] on the market today… Now, you have one more option — and it’s already in your pocket. Starting today in beta, your phone can be your security key — it’s built into devices running Android 7.0+.”



Samsung Pay enters beta testing in Indonesia

Samsung Pay swipes into Indonesia — KrAsia — “Samsung Pay is partnering with Ant Financial-backed mobile wallet platform DANA to conduct closed beta testing on some devices… In the near future, Samsung Pay will collaborate with more digital payment platforms to expand its services in Southeast Asia’s most populous country… Samsung Pay is available in 24 markets. In Southeast Asia, the app has already landed in Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand.”



WhatsApp Payments to launch in UK, Mexico and Brazil?

WhatsApp Payments reportedly coming to Mexico, Brazil, UK next — NDTV — “According to WABetaInfo, a prolific tipster of upcoming WhatsApp features, three countries — Brazil, Mexico, and [the] UK — will be getting WhatsApp Payments next… The service was introduced in beta in India last year but is yet to roll out to all users in the country because of regulatory hurdles.”


Samsung Pay adds support for low-cost international remittances

Samsung Pay starts overseas remittance service in 17 countries — Pulse — “Samsung Pay users can now wire money [internationally] through their mobile phones and save in fees compared to sending money overseas via a conventional remittance route… The beta service will be available in 17 countries including the United States, China, and Japan. The company plans to gradually expand the service to other countries as well as add more partners.”


Metrolinx to let commuters top up their Presto transit card with their NFC phone

New app will let Presto customers pay from their smartphones — Ottawa Sun — “Metrolinx, the Crown agency that oversees the Presto system, has just released a new beta version of an app that will eventually allow customers to avoid the line by loading their cards directly from their smartphones… Users will be able to load funds directly using their debit or credit card, check the remaining balance of their account and set up a notification system to alert them when their funds are too low or their passes near expiry… Android phones with near field communication (NFC) capabilities will be able to load their funds instantaneously by simply pressing their cards against the back of their smartphones.”




Safaricom to launch messaging service that leverages M-Pesa for payments

One of the world’s biggest mobile money services wants to become a social network — Quartz — “The messaging service, known as Bonga (which means “to chat” in colloquial Swahili), was partially launched on April 26, in closed beta testing for select users on Android devices, according to documents seen by Quartz. The app will allow users to review their balance on M-Pesa, besides letting customers transact money without leaving the platform.”



Russian banks prep for launch of national biometric ID platform

Tinkoff Bank takes part in demonstrating a beta version of the Unified Biometrics System (UBS) — Tinkoff Bank — “Rostelecom, together with Tinkoff Bank, VTB Bank and Pochta Bank, has presented a beta version of its Unified Biometrics System (UBS), a digital platform developed at the request of the Ministry of Communications and Mass Media and the Bank of Russia. The beta version features all the key components to deliver basic human identification functionality and is ready to be integrated into the banks’ information systems… The commercial launch of the Unified Biometrics System is slated for 1 July 2018.”


WhatsApp Payments enters beta testing in India

WhatsApp Payments is almost here, shows up on WhatsApp Beta — Gizmo Times — “The latest WhatsApp beta version has started showing the Payment option in the attachments list. The payments will be through UPI (Unified Payments Interface) but for now, it is only showing the list of banks and also the bank account that is linked, but the account is not getting added. This indicates the final stage of inclusion of WhatsApp payments system on the Android app.”



Trimet to roll out world’s first integration of transit ticketing card with Android Pay

Portland-Vancouver’s Hop Fastpass partners with Google, becoming the first virtual transit fare card available within Android Pay globally — TriMet — “TriMet and Google are teaming up for a first — making Hop Fastpass the first virtual transit card available in Android Pay starting early next year… In December 2017, a select group of TriMet, C-Tran, and Portland Streetcar beta testers will be able to load a virtual Hop card into Android Pay — giving them the ability to tap their phones to pay for their fares and receive all the benefits of a physical Hop card.”


Apple Pay Cash goes live in latest iOS and watchOS public beta releases

Apple Pay Cash now available in beta on iOS 11.2 and watchOS 4.2 — 9to5Mac — “The new feature lets you send and receive payments using Apple Pay over iMessage as well as pay in stores with a new Apple Pay Cash virtual debit card… Apple Pay Cash will be available for all customers in the United States when iOS 11.2 and watchOS 4.2 are officially released, and developer and public beta testers can start using the feature today.”



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