Zwipe, MasterCard team up to combine fingerprint authentication, contactless payments
At a press event last week, MasterCard and Zwipe announced a new type of payment card dubbed the Zwipe MasterCard. Where the new card is different from the the standard credit or debit card is in the payment process, looking to biometrics to approve purchases. The Zwipe MasterCard uses authentication via fingerprint for MasterCard contactless payment terminals, while retaining Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) chips on cards.
Effort would also push contextual offers from retailers to participants
MasterCard and connectivity provider Syniverse today joined forces to deliver a number of mobile and payment services designed to enhance peace of mind for mobile users when traveling abroad. The two companies are currently testing a technology for an opt-in service that will enable card transactions for users only when they have their mobile device switched on in a specific geolocation, adjacent to the transaction location.
British hacker faces 10 years in prison for attacks
A British hacker has been found guilty for his part in a Distributed Denial of Service attack against payment services. Anonymous member Christopher Weatherhead, attacked MasterCard, Visa, and Paypal after they turned away from processing payments for Wikileaks, as well as music industry companies, in attacks costing those involved over $5.6 million.
NFC payment system moves to cloud-based storage
Google Wallet has received some major updates today. The mobile payments platform has opened up to accept all credit and debit cards from American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa, with financial data stored in the cloud instead of on the handset itself. Twenty five national US retailers have partnered with Google for the service, and through a partnership with MasterCard PayPass, mobile payments can be performed at over 200,000 retail locations across the country.
Initial roll-out in Poland this year, Germany to follow
MasterCard and Deutsche Telekom will enable smartphone payments in Germany and Poland in the near future. Near Field Communication-based payments will be pushed through to T-Mobile customers in Poland by Q3 and to Germany by 2013, ahead of a potential rollout in other European regions.
Global Payments breached for MasterCard, Visa
Third-party payment card processor Global Payments has had its security compromised, putting nearly 50,000 MasterCard and Visa holders at risk, sources told the Wall Street Journal. The two major credit cards have been alerting their customers and banks that issue their cards regarding this breach, though MasterCard said its own systems remain secure. It has also hired an unnamed independent data security organization to look into the hack.
Apple patent would have iTunes-based NFC wallet
A newly granted USPTO patent has lent credence to notions that Apple is looking to implement NFC in iOS. The technique describes a way to define how a payment is made when an iPhone with an NFC chip is brought up to a terminal to pay. It would set rules for the deal, such as payment limits, requiring permission for specific vendors in their online and offline modes, and adding restrictions for buying alcohol or other kinds of goods.
Chase, Capital One, Barclaycard first companies
Isis, the mobile commerce venture between AT&T, T-Mobile, and Verizon have finalized their wireless payment standard for mobile devices, calling it Isis Mobile Wallet. It's due to launch this summer, with Chase, Capital One, and Barclaycard being the first banks to sign up and have their credit, debit, and prepaid cards be compatible with the system. The first merchants to support the system will be located in Salt Lake City and Austin, Texas. Like Google Wallet, its major competitor, Isis Mobile Wallet let users securely pay for goods and merchandise with their handsets.
MasterCard alludes to next iPhone having PayPass
MasterCard's emerging payments leader, Ed McLaughlin, may have been inadvertently pushed into fueling the off and on rumors of the iPhone getting NFC (near-field communications) support. When discussing adoption in an interview with Fast Company, he made the unusual statement that he didn't know of any phone maker that "isn't in the process" of implementing MasterCard's PayPass NFC system. When pressed on whether that included Apple, he stopped short of admitting a partnership but implied that Apple was a partner.
Public rollout follows Telefonica trials
RIM has announced that it has teamed with Turkish carrier Turkcell to launch a NFC payment system. The mobile wallet application will initially be available on the BlackBerry Bold 9900, enabling users to make payments by tapping the handset against MasterCard PayPass readers throughout the country and abroad.
Intel and MasterCard will bring NFC to ultrabooks
Intel and MasterCard on Monday announced a partnership for NFC on computers that would make online shopping more secure and a better overall experience. Users of ultrabooks are targeted, but future Intel-powered PCs will also benefit from the multi-year agreement, the companies said. The undertaking will focus on bringing MasterCard's NFC-based PayPass technology and Intel's Identity Protection Technology to Ultrabooks.
BlackBerry Bold 9900 and Curve 9360 OK for PayPass
RIM had the distinction of providing the first phones to use a SIM card that support MasterCard's NFC-based PayPass tech for short-range wireless payments. Both the BlackBerry Bold 9900 and the Curve 9360 can, with the right apps, pay at a store just by tapping a receiver. The account will be attached to the SIM card, not the phone, and let users swap phones with the same account, although it may create issues with switching carriers.
Square readers spread to most major US shops
Square significantly widened the reach of its mobile payment reader hardware on Monday with a retail expansion. The device was already available at Apple stores but is now available at Best Buy, Radio Shack, and Target. The reach gives it 9,000 potential places to buy the iOS- and Android-ready add-on, which normally costs $10 and should give users an equal amount of initial credit in payments.
Tapping now allowed at 2 stations and on bus lines
Google has teamed up with the NJ Transit to let its riders pay for fares using Google Wallet and NFC "tap to pay" technology. At launch, the service will be available at two stations and on a few bus lines. Also initially, riders will only be able to pay with Citigroup MasterCard, as well as Google's own prepaid virtual card.
Google Wallet now live with more cards, one phone
As hinted earlier, Google Wallet on Monday went active for real users. The service in starting off will still work on just Citi MasterCards and the virtual Google Prepaid Card, but is now opening to rival cards. American Express, Discover, and Visa are all making their NFC specs available to let banks add the cards to the mobile payment system.
Google Wallet gets hard launch date
Google is finally expected to switch on Google Wallet on Monday after unveiling it four months earlier. Partners are receiving a notice telling them that the NFC (near-field communications) tap-to-pay service will be ready to use anywhere a MasterCard PayPass terminal is active. Although a few NFC-aware phones have launched since, TechCrunch understood that the Nexus S 4G running Android 2.3.4 would still be the only phone to support it at first.
Mastercard shows off QkR platform for mobile
MasterCard has gone beyond Google Wallet to show a new mobile platform that could use multiple mobile technologies to solve mobile payments. Known collectively as QkR, they focus on QR codes for mobile payments but also audio cues, NFC short-range wireless, and even Microsoft's Kinect for the Xbox 360. One system would have an NFC 'coaster' that could recognize products shown on TV and let users tap an NFC-equipped phone or tablet on the coaster to buy whatever's on TV.
Visa fast tracks NFC mobile wallets
Visa on Tuesday said it would ramp up its NFC mobile payment plans. Its support for the short-range credit card payments would now include dual-mode chips that can support Europay along with domestic standards. The hardware would also bring in dynamic authentication that would introduce very specific values for each deal: even a replica card or fake data on a phone wouldn't work because it would produce different values each time.
Isis lands four major credit card firms
Isis on Tuesday said it had landed the top four credit card companies in the US for its mobile payment plans. American Express, Discover, MasterCard, and Visa have all agreed to handle payments from NFC-based phones when the service goes live in the first six months of 2012. The approach may give it at least a temporary edge over Google Wallet, which is so far limited to MasterCard.
Apple patent on NFC Macs published at USPTO
A new USPTO patent filing has revived rumors that NFC-based Mac-to-iPhone syncing is in development. The patent for an "electronic device with conductive housing and near field antenna" would have a computer or any other display-equipped device carry spiral antennas to pick up near-field communications from a smartphone or other mobile device when brought close. Its example design, which resembles an iMac or a similar computer display, would work with multiple devices put typically within about four to eight inches away.
CSI and MasterCard work on multi-platform payments
New leaks Monday have raised eyebrows with MasterCard and CSI uniting on a new mobile payment app. CSI Virtual MasterCard will let Android, BlackBerry, iPad, and iPhone users pay with their phones instead of plastic. It's unknown from the Engadget mention whether or not it will use NFC wireless or if it will work purely through software.
Google Wallet intros with Sprint, Citi, MasterCard
Google at its New York City event launched Google Wallet as the first major NFC mobile payment system in the US. The platform revolves around the concept of virtual cards, including a Google Prepaid Card, that lets users pay at a store just by bringing the phone close to a terminal. It ties in directly with Google Offers and can give offers based on the phone's location, deals pushed from the web, and NFC tags built into posters and other ads.
Isis members make NFC payment plan less advanced
Isis, the coalition of US wireless carriers AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile to bring NFC payments on handsets to the masses, will not go forward as planned earlier, according to reports on Wednesday. While trials were due to start early in 2012, the three carriers have now purportedly agreed to change their approach and make it less advanced. Instead, they will create a "mobile wallet" that will link users' existing Visa, MasterCard or other major credit cards to the account, though this is not official yet.
Google to test NFC with Citigroup and MasterCard
Google's trials of NFC-based phone payments gained more tangible details through a leak early Monday. The plan described by the WSJ would allow Citigroup debit and MasterCard credit card owners to make payments by swiping a Nexus S, or future Android 2.3 phones with NFC, near a reader at the counter. VeriFone would still be involved, the sources said, and would be the one providing the payment machines.
Holiday online sales up 15pc but not PCs
Online sales grew rapidly in the holiday this year but weren't necessarily matched by most computer sales, a pair of official and unofficial reports found today. MasterCard said its online sales were up 15.4 percent between Hallowe'en and December 23. Clothes led the group, but electronics made "significant gains." Six days cracked the $1 billion mark, including not just Cyber Monday but the two days immediately afterwards.
Verizon, AT&T pick where to test phone payments
The planned smartphone payment system being developed by AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile in the US will soon begin field tests, according to unofficial reports. BusinessWeek says AT&T and Verizon, along with minority partner T-Mobile, are said to be testing the system in Austin, Minneapolis and Salt Lake City. The project is code-named Mercury, with a pilot due to start in the middle of 2011.
US carriers to use NFC on phones for payment
Three of the larger US carriers are developing a smartphone-based alternative to a traditional credit or debit payment, sources claimed on Monday. AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon are developing a Near Field Communication system like Japan's FeliCa. Buyers would swipe a phone with an NFC chip near a reader to pay for goods at stores rather than use a card.