Latest News

In-Depth: Nxt-ID Gets Much-Needed Financing, Clearing Way to Spin Off Its Payments Wearables Provisioning Unit Fit Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – U.S.-based Nxt-ID, whose Fit Pay unit provides payment card provisioning for Garmin Pay, has announced a closing date for a $16.5 million loan it will use for working capital and to refinance an existing loan.

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank Sees Jump in Mobile Transactions with Apple Pay, Though Still Small Share of Total Card Use

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Commonwealth Bank of Australia, one of Australia’s largest banks, has said its mobile wallet transactions have increased by nearly three times in the two months since introducing Apple Pay, according to a report, though the bank declines to release any actual transaction figures, and mobile transactions still are believed to make up a very small percentage of total transactions.

In-Depth: Singapore Prepares to Launch Acceptance of Open-Loop Transit Payments Following Lengthy Trial

NFC TIMES Exclusive InsightWhen it launches its SimplyGo service April 4, Singapore’s Land Transport Authority will become the first major transit authority in Asia outside of China to launch acceptance of open-loop payments of fares.

Analysis: NFC Forum’s New Money Transfer Spec Likely Too Little, Too Late to Reverse QR Growth Trends

NFC TIMES Exclusive – As QR code-based mobile payments continue to threaten take-up of NFC technology, especially in Asia, the NFC Forum industry trade group is taking action.

Developer of Visa Transit SAM Says Technology Could Help Turn Closed-Loop Ticketing System into EMV Payments Service

Mar 14 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive – The developer of Visa’s new transit secure-access module, or SAM, said the technology could potentially help turn even a low-end, closed-loop transit-ticketing system, such as Mifare Classic, into an EMV-enabled payments system–although that could still require transit operators to install new acceptance terminals, and they would still need to set up a back-end system to support it.

Swedish Watchmaker Latest Passive Wearables Maker with Plans to Enable Payments

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Small Swedish analog watchmaker TRIWA next week plans to launch payments wearables enabled for tokenized Mastercard-branded cards issued by Swedish banking group SEB, with provisioning company Fidesmo telling NFC Times there will be more watch brands to come enabling payments.

Analysis: Apple’s Planned Credit Card with Goldman Sachs Unlikely to Significantly Boost Apple Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While Apple’s deal with Goldman Sachs to jointly roll out a new credit card this year integrated with Apple Pay and Apple’s devices made headlines Thursday, it was neither the first news of this partnership nor the first deal of its kind for Apple.

Sony Launches Smart Strap in Europe Supporting NFC Payments; High-End Device Costs as Much as Latest Apple Watch

Feb 16 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Sony has introduced its NFC-enabled smart watch strap, Wena, to the UK and Ireland, which will allow users to turn their analog watches into hybrid smartwatches and tap the straps to pay with tokenized EMV-compliant cards loaded into the devices from wallet apps.

Open-Loop Payments to Launch on London’s Airport Train Service with Calls for Further Expansion

Feb 15 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – ­The Heathrow Express airport line serving London will begin accepting contactless open-loop payments along with closed-loop Oyster cards next week–more than six years after commuters first could pay by tapping their bank cards and NFC phones to ride on buses on the separate Transport for London system.

In-Depth: More U.S. Issuers to Join Contactless Card Rollout; Adoption Expected to Surpass NFC Wallets

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – There is more evidence that U.S. banks will be moving a substantial portion of their card base to contactless over the next few years, as they reissue their basic EMV cards with a contactless interface, giving American consumers more opportunities to tap to pay than ever before.

USA Technologies Feels Wrath of Investors After Admitting Financial Irregularities and Audit Firm Quits

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – USA Technologies, or USAT, which has been the largest enabler of card and contactless payments on vending machines in the U.S., saw half its market cap wiped yesterday, after its independent audit firm, RSM US, resigned, saying it could no longer rely on USAT’s representations in connection with the 2017 audit of the company.

In-Depth: Payments Wearables Market Enters New Phase as Passive Devices Get Tokenized Bank Cards

Feb 22 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive – With the announcement this month by large analog watchmaker Swatch of the expansion of its digital payments service SwatchPAY! to Europe, the payments wearables market could see a considerable change.

Provisioning Tokens to Swatch Watches in the Store: How SwatchPAY! Works

NFC TIMES Exclusive – Switzerland-based watchmaker Swatch plans to roll out its SwatchPAY! contactless payments service to a number of European countries and then perhaps globally, representing budding competition to Apple Pay, Fitbit Pay and Garmin Pay. But unlike these three smartwatch-enabled Pays services and others, SwatchPAY! uses low-cost analog watches as its payments devices.

Cook Discloses Apple Pay Transactions Showing That Growth Continues, Albeit Somewhat More Slowly Than Before

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple Tuesday reported that its digital payments service recorded more than 1.8 billion transactions globally in the tech giant’s fiscal first quarter ending in December, more than double compared with the same quarter a year earlier–though transaction growth is slowing and transactions still represent a small percentage of total card transactions.

Garmin Pay Welcomes Support from Third U.S. Network but More Competition on Horizon

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Garmin Pay added a third network to its smartwatch payments service in the U.S. this week, enabling Discover Financial Services-branded cards to be loaded onto its NFC-enabled devices, as more acceptance points for NFC payments in the U.S. come online to give consumers additional places to tap to pay.

Another Major Holdout Among Major U.S. Merchants, Target, Agrees to Accept Contactless and NFC Payments

NFC Times Exclusive Insight – Acceptance of contactless and NFC payments in the U.S. has lagged behind many other developed markets for years, but that continues to change, with another major merchant–big box retailer and top 10 U.S. chain Target­–announcing Tuesday that it would soon take tap and pay.

Swatch Expands Payments Service–Provides Affordable Analog Alternative to Smartwatches

Jan 21 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Swatch, one of the world’s largest watchmakers, has expanded its contactless-payments service to its home base of Switzerland, launching the restyled SwatchPAY! service with seven card issuers Thursday. A spokeswoman told NFC Times the company plans to expand the service to other European countries this year. 

Dutch Bank ABN Amro Commercially Launches Payments Wearables with System to Provision after Sale

Jan 18 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Dutch bank ABN Amro commercially launched its contactless payments service from wearables this week, following a lengthy pilot.

More Asian Cities Open Up to Open-Loop Cards and NFC- and QR Code-Based Fare Payments

Feb 22 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive – Unlike transit authorities in the U.S. and Europe, transit agencies and the governments that control them in Asia often run their closed-loop fare-collection schemes as separate businesses.

In-Depth: Contactless Card Issuance to Finally Get Rolling in U.S. This Year

Jan 23 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The U.S. is finally on the brink of large-scale contactless EMV card issuance, with optimistic projections from the payment networks, and at least one of the largest U.S. issuers committed to converting its credit and debit card portfolios  to dual-interface cards by the end of 2019.

In-Depth: In-Car Payments Gears Up but Takes Time to Get Rolling

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Car manufacturers, payments networks and platform providers continue to make deals as they gear up for the much-anticipated arrival of in-car payments–which would enable motorists to buy gasoline, pay for parking and purchase food for takeout, all from their dashboards.

Golden Globes Trophies Get Provisioned Like Payments Wearables to Ensure Authenticity

NFC TIMES Exclusive – The 76th Annual Golden Globes held Sunday featured the usual share of Hollywood celebrities preening for the cameras, showing off their new designer gowns and latest nips and tucks, while holding their trophies high if they won.

Japanese Megabank Mizuho Plans to Launch New Digital Payments Service with QR Codes Soon

Mar 7 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Japanese megabank Mizuho will reportedly move forward with its planned launch of a new digital currency and payments service using QR codes in stores and for funds transfers–with plans to cut the fees merchants will pay to accept the new payments scheme, as compared with credit cards.

More QR Code Payments Services Planned for Japan, Home of Original Contactless-Mobile Rollouts

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Japan, the first market globally to adopt contactless-mobile payments, in 2004, with a technology similar to NFC, will see its two largest convenience store chains introduce their own mobile payments services this year–both using bar codes or QR codes instead of NFC.

Analysis: Commonwealth Bank’s Agreement to Support Apple Pay Could Mark Turning Point for Apple’s Bank Recruitment Efforts

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – With its capitulation last week to Apple and agreement to participate in the tech giant’s payments service, Australia’s largest financial institution, Commonwealth Bank–which had once vowed not to support Apple Pay–shows that Apple is making headway with major banks that had once resisted supporting the NFC wallet.

Deals

In-Depth: Singapore Prepares to Launch Acceptance of Open-Loop Transit Payments Following Lengthy Trial

NFC TIMES Exclusive InsightWhen it launches its SimplyGo service April 4, Singapore’s Land Transport Authority will become the first major transit authority in Asia outside of China to launch acceptance of open-loop payments of fares.

In-Depth: Nxt-ID Gets Much-Needed Financing, Clearing Way to Spin Off Its Payments Wearables Provisioning Unit Fit Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – U.S.-based Nxt-ID, whose Fit Pay unit provides payment card provisioning for Garmin Pay, has announced a closing date for a $16.5 million loan it will use for working capital and to refinance an existing loan.

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank Sees Jump in Mobile Transactions with Apple Pay, Though Still Small Share of Total Card Use

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Commonwealth Bank of Australia, one of Australia’s largest banks, has said its mobile wallet transactions have increased by nearly three times in the two months since introducing Apple Pay, according to a report, though the bank declines to release any actual transaction figures, and mobile transactions still are believed to make up a very small percentage of total transactions.

Analysis: NFC Forum’s New Money Transfer Spec Likely Too Little, Too Late to Reverse QR Growth Trends

NFC TIMES Exclusive – As QR code-based mobile payments continue to threaten take-up of NFC technology, especially in Asia, the NFC Forum industry trade group is taking action.

Developer of Visa Transit SAM Says Technology Could Help Turn Closed-Loop Ticketing System into EMV Payments Service

Mar 14 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive – The developer of Visa’s new transit secure-access module, or SAM, said the technology could potentially help turn even a low-end, closed-loop transit-ticketing system, such as Mifare Classic, into an EMV-enabled payments system–although that could still require transit operators to install new acceptance terminals, and they would still need to set up a back-end system to support it.

Japanese Megabank Mizuho Plans to Launch New Digital Payments Service with QR Codes Soon

Mar 7 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Japanese megabank Mizuho will reportedly move forward with its planned launch of a new digital currency and payments service using QR codes in stores and for funds transfers–with plans to cut the fees merchants will pay to accept the new payments scheme, as compared with credit cards.

Swedish Watchmaker Latest Passive Wearables Maker with Plans to Enable Payments

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Small Swedish analog watchmaker TRIWA next week plans to launch payments wearables enabled for tokenized Mastercard-branded cards issued by Swedish banking group SEB, with provisioning company Fidesmo telling NFC Times there will be more watch brands to come enabling payments.

Analysis: Apple’s Planned Credit Card with Goldman Sachs Unlikely to Significantly Boost Apple Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While Apple’s deal with Goldman Sachs to jointly roll out a new credit card this year integrated with Apple Pay and Apple’s devices made headlines Thursday, it was neither the first news of this partnership nor the first deal of its kind for Apple.

Cook Discloses Apple Pay Transactions Showing That Growth Continues, Albeit Somewhat More Slowly Than Before

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple Tuesday reported that its digital payments service recorded more than 1.8 billion transactions globally in the tech giant’s fiscal first quarter ending in December, more than double compared with the same quarter a year earlier–though transaction growth is slowing and transactions still represent a small percentage of total card transactions.

In-Depth: Payments Wearables Market Enters New Phase as Passive Devices Get Tokenized Bank Cards

Feb 22 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive – With the announcement this month by large analog watchmaker Swatch of the expansion of its digital payments service SwatchPAY! to Europe, the payments wearables market could see a considerable change.

Features

U.S. Football Sees NFC-Enabled E-Tickets as way to Cut Fraud, Market to Fans

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – With the National Football League kicking off its season in a few weeks in the U.S., fans will be using NFC, QR codes and perhaps ultrasonic signals on their mobile devices, in addition to tapping contactless-enabled paper tickets, to attend football games and other events at all 31 NFL stadiums.

In-Depth: As U.S. Lags in Contactless Payments, are Issuers Ready to Roll Out Dual-Interface EMV Cards?

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Most issuers in the U.S. have so far held back from rolling out contactless or dual-interface cards, but merchant acceptance has been quietly building over the past few years, despite some large U.S. retailers balking at accepting contactless cards and NFC-enabled devices.

In-Depth: Can Contactless Cards Succeed in U.S. Where NFC Mobile Wallets Have Failed?

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Payments industry backers suggest that U.S. banks could have an incentive to begin contactless rollouts soon, but in the absence of deadlines from the major payments networks, which are rapidly approaching in other markets, there's no guarantee of rollouts in the U.S. on the horizon.

How Mobile Wallets, Payments Wearables, Tokenization Fared the Past Year, and Where They Stand Now

By: 
Dan Balaban

NFC TIMES Exclusive – As the digital payments ecosystem moves into 2018, it is dealing with many of the same unfulfilled promises, works in progress and unfinished business as in 2017.

U.S. Merchant Apps Square Off Against NFC ‘Pays’ Wallets: The Retailer Perspective

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive – As more U.S. merchants launch their own payments apps, some seem positioned to offer serious competition to Apple Pay and the other NFC “Pays” wallets.

Backers Look to Range of Devices for Contextual Commerce, Though Fragmentation Will Pose Challenges

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Promoters of contextual commerce are looking to a range of connected devices, including smart appliances and such home hubs as Alexa–along with a host of mobile devices–to enable consumers to pay in almost every context. But many challenges remain for what could become a “very disjointed” array of payment options, experts say.

Feature: How Do Mobile Payments Fit into an Omnichannel World?

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – As retailers and payments services providers increasingly try to connect and track consumer transactions across online and in-store channels, mobile payments must function as part of an omnichannel payments ecosystem, say industry observers.

IoT Payments Backers Say Devices Will Range from the Familiar to the Far-Fetched

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – With the buzz around the Internet of Things growing ever stronger, the payments ecosystem is determined not to be left out.

Sound-Based Payments Target Developing Economies but Face Long Road to Consumer Take-Up

By: 
K.N. Smith

NFC TIMES Exclusive – With two sound-based payments launches in India in September, the technology has drawn some interest, but although several banks in emerging countries have signed on with sound-based payments platforms, consumer take-up remains unclear, and it’s likely that the road to adoption will be at least as slow as that faced by NFC payments in developed markets.

Energy Drink Promotion Features Different Way to Put Payment Applications Onto Objects

By: 
Dan Balaban

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While the recent promotion by the makers of Lucozade Energy drinks in the UK, which enabled users to tap their bottles on contactless readers to redeem free rides on the London Underground, may have been just a clever marketing stunt, the way the drinks company got the prepaid EMV application onto the bottles broke the mold for how such applications usually get provisioned.