Thursday, 24 February 2011

London to Lead World as Plans Unveiled for Complete Contactless Travel

London will lead the world in 2012 when it will become the first city in the world where passengers are able to access an entire transport network with just a swipe of their contactless bank or credit card.

The new system will be up and running on all of London's 8,000 buses in time for the 2012 Games. The system will be rolled out onto the Tube, DLR, Tram and London Overground network before the end of 2012.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: 'London leads the way in so many different fields and we will be the first in the world to allow the millions using our Tube, trams, buses and trains to benefit from the ease of using this technology.'

Oyster will also continue to be accepted for the many millions of customers who use it every day. To make the new system possible TfL is upgrading software in the Oyster smartcard system to recognise contactless credit and debit cards issued by Visa, MasterCard and American Express as well as Oyster cards.

The new system will make London's public transport far more accessible for domestic and international visitors. When fully rolled out, the technology will work even if their card was issued by an overseas bank.

World's First Contactless Hybrid Finger Scanner Launched

Today, NEC Corporation announced the commercial launch of the world's first device - "HS100-10" to simultaneously acquire fingerprint and finger vein characteristics without physical contact. Worldwide shipments are scheduled to begin in from May 2011.

The HS100-10's simultaneous acquisition of both fingerprint and finger vein information makes it particularly difficult for impostors to deceive the authentication system using it. The system's contactless sensor can accurately capture characteristics of fingers that are exceedingly dry or moist with exceptional accuracy, unlike the conventional contact-based fingerprint authentication devices.

Furthermore, the HS100-10's USB interface allows users to connect with a PC in order to logon to its operating system or unlock its screensaver in both a stand-alone environment and an ActiveDirectory(R)(*1) environment. The HS100-10 is also compatible with major access management software, including IBM's "Tivoli(R) Access Manager for Enterprise Single Sign-On" and Novell's "Novell SecureLogin," This combination of support for ID and access management with biometric data significantly reduces user concerns regarding the proliferation of user IDs and passwords.

Japan-based NEC's HS100-10 sensor will be displayed at "Pulse 2011" in Las Vegas, USA from February 27, 2011.

Isis Platform Will Be 'Open to All'

Seeking to fill the planned Isis mobile wallets with a number of services and perhaps also to repel an expected line of attack from rivals Visa Inc. and MasterCard Worldwide, Isis joint mobile operators are coming out with an "open" platform.

The representatives of the venture, formed by mobile carriers Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile USA, were running with that theme at the recent Mobile and Transit Payments Summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, put on by the Smart Card Alliance.

"Isis is enabling creation of a large-scale, open platform welcome and open to all", said Jim Stapleton, the new head of sales and account management for the joint venture, which is planning to introduce a mobile-payment brand using NFC phones.

Stapleton said Isis would be open to any number of bank-card issuers and other service providers, as well as more mobile operators. He also added the wallets could contain closed-loop fare-collection applications as well as bank-issued Isis-brand payment to be used by the riders to pay fares directly onboard buses and at subway gates.

Clear2Pay NFC Test Solution Approved by NFC Forum

Clear2Pay today announces that the NFC Forum, a non-profit industry association that advances the use of NFC technology, approved its NFC Test Solution. The test tool is developed to enable the industry confirm compliance of their products to the NFC Forum standards-based specifications. The Integri branded solution will be used by certification test laboratories for the official validation of digital protocol conformance of NFC products worldwide. The solution is also available for NFC device manufacturers' debugging and pre-certification needs.

The approval covers the Integri Test Solution implementing all Test Cases for Digital Protocol and Tag Operations as defined by the NFC Forum for the First Wave of Certification. The Test Tool is built on a proprietary Open Test Platform, enabling flexible and scalable solutions. Also, Clear2Pay is working on a partner solution to address the next Certification Wave requirements of analogue RF testing.

Jean de Crane, Chief Operating Officer at Clear2Pay, clarifies:" This approval rewards the intense efforts we did in the field of NFC over the past few years. NFC is a technology with an enormous potential that constitutes real added-value applications for consumers and corporations. We are truly delighted to contribute to the creation of a foundation for trusted NFC products and thus accelerate the global uptake of this promising technology."

Industry Survey Finds Widespread Adoption of NFC Payments at Least Two Years Away

Sybase 365, a subsidiary of Sybase, Inc. today announced findings of a global survey about leading inhibitors of widespread adoption of mobile payments. Forty percent of respondents cited the main inhibitor of widespread mobile payment adoption was a lack of coordination between key stakeholders, including mobile operators, merchants, payment processors, banks and developers.

"For mobile commerce to take off, industry stakeholders must harmonize their efforts in the same way that led to proliferation of SMS and MMS technologies," said Marty Beard, President, Sybase 365. "In markets where multiple parties are working together, such as mpass Germany and paybox Austria, we have successful ecosystems where end users can pay for a multitude of goods and services via the mobile."

While NFC will help further enable mobile payments, successful and established mobile technologies, including SMS and USSD are already leading the development of the ecosystem today.

"Mobile channels such as SMS, browser and apps are already being implemented by merchants globally. The challenge facing NFC is how to make the consumer payment experience significantly faster and easier than it already is." added Beard.

Among 251 attendees polled at GSMA Mobile World Congress last week, 76 percent believe mobile proximity payments using NFC (Near Field Communication) technology is still at least two years away. Once again the lack of industry coordination (30 percent) was the cited as the main culprit for delayed NFC adoption. Other challenges included lack of NFC readers at point-of-sale (26 percent) and inadequate handsets (25 percent) were cited as inhibiting rapid deployment of mobile payments.

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