Alipay to invest $448m promoting face recognition payments in stores

Alipay to spend US$448m plugging new face scanner — Yicai Global — “Dragonfly 2’s next-generation 3D cameras are more precise and have a wider angle, and since the device can handle payments under various lighting conditions merchants will not need to make any changes to their store lights… The scanner is priced at CNY1,999 (US$298.50), nearly 30% less than the previous version.”


German central banker calls for European payments network

Europe needs to get off the sidelines — Deutsche Bundesbank — “Here in Europe, we need to prevent a situation from arising in which American and Chinese payment systems are all we have left to choose between. Highly successful firms from the United States and China are looking to carve out a huge chunk of the European market. Hence the desire to forge a payments solution with a clear-cut European ‘brand’.”


JCPenney pulls support for contactless payments

JCPenney explains why it dropped Apple Pay — Techcrunch — “A third-party credit card brand made the requirement for all merchants to actively support EMV contactless functionality effective April 13, retiring the legacy MSD contactless technology in place. Given the resources and lead time associated with meeting the new mandate, JCPenney chose to suspend all contactless payment options until a later date.”


EMVCo, W3C and Fido Alliance to work together on payments security and interoperability

Web Payment Security Interest Group Charter — World Wide Web Consortium — “The mission of the Web Payment Security Interest Group is to enhance the security and interoperability of web payments. The group pursues its mission by creating a forum for organizations to define areas of collaboration and identify gaps between existing technical specifications in order to increase compatibility among different technologies.”




Facebook Messenger to shutter its P2P payments service in UK and France

Facebook will scrap Messenger payments in the UK and France — Engadget — “Facebook will discontinue peer-to-peer Messenger payments in France and the UK on 15 June, the company told Engadget. ‘After evaluating how we give people the best experiences in Messenger, we made the decision to focus our efforts on experiences that people find most useful,’ Facebook said.”


Jinan City metro installs face recognition at fare gates

China opens first 3D facial recognition metro line in Shandong — ECNS — “Metro Line 1 in Jinan City, Shandong Province has become the first in China to adopt 3D facial recognition technology… The 3D facial recognition technology-empowered gate can allow entry of 30 to 40 passengers per minute… The error rate is said to be only one in one million, while the technology can also detect fraudulent use of photos, videos or masks.”


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+.”




HBO commissions Game of Thrones sneakers with NFC tags

HBO Asia x SBTG Collab brings 4 ‘Game of Thrones’ sneakers to celebrate final season — Click The City — “Each pair of Game of Thrones x SBTG customized sneakers are embedded with near field communication (NFC) chips powered by VeChain, a public blockchain platform that allows any potential collector the ability to verify the authenticity of each pair through VeChainThor blockchain. The NFC chips also contain exclusive behind-the-scenes videos of each sneaker design which can be played and viewed by anyone using the VeChain mobile app.”



One in eight contactless journeys in London now made with mobile phones

How the London Underground brings in 53,000 new contactless users a day — PaymentsSource — “More than 21.6m journeys per week are made on London public transit using contactless payments. More than 53,000 new contactless cards or new mobile contactless payments enter the TfL each day, and one in eight contactless journeys come via Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, or other mobile wallet apps.”


Transit card providers to issue combi card that works in both Singapore and Malaysia

EZ-Link and Touch ‘N Go to introduce dual currency cross-border combi card — EZ-Link — “A first in Southeast Asia, the Combi Card will securely host both electronic wallets from EZ-Link and Touch ‘n Go. Targeted for launch in quarter four 2019, the card will first allow users to pay for urban mobility in both countries… To date, EZ-Link has issued about 30 million Cepas EZ-Link cards in Singapore and Touch ‘n Go has more than 23 million active Touch ‘n Go cards in circulation in Malaysia.”


Aeon to identify customers with face recognition at 80 self-serve stores

Aeon to use facial recognition at 80 China self-serve stores — Nikkei Asian Review — “Aeon, Japan’s largest retailer by sales, will soon debut a chain of self-serve smart stores in China that can anticipate what a customer will buy upon entering the establishment… Facial recognition technology installed in the stores will identify shoppers. Customers’ smartphones will then display recommended items and coupons based on purchasing habits and digital payment history.”


Sainsbury’s: Mobile self-checkout drives higher shopper spending

Behind Sainsbury’s in-store Mobile Pay solution — Essential Retail — “We have an average basket spend in store and we were expecting it to be slightly lower than that, but actually it’s coming out higher… If they go into store and see a queue, they want to be quick and grab two things to get into the queue as quickly as possible. But now they take their time and buy three or four things.”


Wells Fargo to add contactless functionality to US credit and debit cards

Wells Fargo accelerates customer checkout experience with new tap-to-pay contactless cards — Wells Fargo — “This week, new Wells Fargo consumer credit cardholders began receiving cards with the contactless feature when opening an account, and existing Wells Fargo consumer credit cardholders will receive a new contactless card when their current credit card expires. Consumer debit cards with the contactless feature will start to become available this summer.”


Walmart to let customers shop for groceries with their voice

Want Walmart to help you grocery shop? With our new voice capabilities, just say the word — Walmart — “Beginning this month, customers can say: ‘Hey Google, talk to Walmart’ and the Google Assistant will add items directly to their Walmart Grocery cart. Best of all, customers can be extra confident that we can quickly and accurately identify the items they are asking for with the help of information from their prior purchases with us. The more you use it, the better we’ll get.”