Features Section

Analysts: Starbucks’ Bar-Code Embrace Unlikely to Slow NFC

Tom Zind

While NFC-based mobile payment could roll out by late this year, Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee shop chain, has made it clear it is not prepared to wait.

First Trickle of Android NFC Apps Appear Before Expected Flood

Dan Balaban

A restaurant-couponing app developed by a tiny startup based in Greenwich, Conn., appeared today in the Android Market store, believed to be the first commercial NFC app for new Android phones in what observers predict will become a flood of new services for the smartphones.

Bling Continues to Seek a Breakout with Recent Moves

Tom Zind

Bling Nation, the fledgling U.S. mobile-payments company, may be in the midst of a course adjustment, as it seeks to increase its visibility and broaden its value to merchants and consumers alike.

Canadian Transit Card Operator: Not So Fast to Open-Loop Payment

Tom Zind, for NFC Times

Although it plans to eventually enable riders to directly pay their fares with contactless credit and debit cards, the operator of a new regional closed-loop transit card scheme in Canada’s largest province, Ontario, prefers to take a more cautious path to open-loop payment.

Bringing Facebook Fans into the Store with Contactless Technology

Dan Balaban

Merchants are becoming skillful at promoting themselves on Facebook–right down to getting their "fans" to post flattering comments and photos on the company page and purchasing from their online stores.

Building A Bling Nation: Progress Remains Promising–But Slow

Tom Zind, for NFC Times

A year into the slow rollout of Bling Nation’s mobile-payment service in the United States, and one thing is clear: There’s pent-up demand for shaking up the status quo and poking a symbolic finger in the eye of entrenched interests.

UK: Merchant Acceptance Makes Strides, But No Breakthrough Yet

Dan Balaban

The rollout of contactless payment in the United Kingdom will soon enter its fourth year, yet the vast majority of cards are still being issued by just one bank, Barclays, and no large retail chain has widely deployed the technology.

'Open' Warfare Breaks Out Among NFC Vendors Over Android

Dan Balaban

With rumors heating up that makers of Android smartphones will add NFC chips to “several” models due out by the first part of next year, the battles among suppliers of those chips and the software that supports them has been heating up, as well.

NFC Ticketing: Interoperability Problems on the Road Ahead?

France’s much-anticipated NFC demonstration project scheduled to launch Friday in Nice will feature a variety of applications, including bank payment. But the premier service is expected to be transit ticketing.

Polish Telcos and Banks Interested in NFC; Bemoan Lack of Phones

Dan Balaban

Polish mobile operator Polkomtel has not yet launched its planned NFC mobile-payment project–set to start in June with 500 users–but it is already talking about expanding it.


Analysis: Google Launches Google Pay Rebrand, as It Seeks to Enable Payments Across Multiple Channels and Devices

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Google began rolling out its previously-announced set of Google Pay services Tuesday in what is primarily a rebrand of Android Pay and other Google payments features. The initiative supports Google’s long-held goal of making payments seamless across its various products and access points.

Can Luxury Watchmaker TAG Heuer Sell Swiss Precision Along with NFC Payments? Its Latest Smartwatch Again Supports Android Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While payments wearables, in general, are taking off more slowly than expected, a number of manufacturers are incorporating the feature in their high-end watches and that includes Switzerland-based luxury watchmaker TAG Heuer.

Hong Kong Banking Group JETCO–Former Backer of NFC–Launches QR Code Payments Service

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Hong Kong ATM and interbank group JETCO is the latest provider to launch a QR code-based payments service for in-store transactions in Asia, with payments coming out of the consumers’ bank accounts. But the group has few if any merchants live yet.

Vendor Hopes to ‘Flip’ Bitcoin Holders into Users of Cryptocurrency for Retail Purchases

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are mainly seen as assets for speculative investments these days rather than currencies for making payments, U.S.-based provisioning and mobile wallet platform company Fit Pay Thursday released a second announcement about its planned contactless device that would enable holders of Bitcoin to make purchases at brick-and-mortar stores.

NXP Continues to Promote ‘Loader Service’ Targeting Wearables Market, Seeking to Sell More Embedded Chips

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – In addition to the NFC secure elements that NXP Semiconductors is providing to wearables maker Garmin for its vívoactive 3 and forthcoming Forerunner 645 smartwatches supporting Garmin Pay, NXP is also supplying its “Loader Service,” a technology that the chip maker has been pushing for more than three years.

Popular Messaging App Most-Used Mobile Payments Service in Taiwan: Survey

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – There’s more evidence that social media and messaging apps are proving to be valuable platforms for promoting mobile payments, at least in Asia.

Can Cryptocurrency Work at the Point of Sale? Some Vendors Want to Try

NFC TIMES Exclusive – As cryptocurrencies gain momentum online, some payments vendors and even a handful of national banks are making the first moves toward bringing those currencies into the world of brick-and-mortar retail with mobile payments, but it will likely be some time before those efforts gain a significant foothold in the market.

More U.S. Transit Authorities Plan to Accept Open-Loop Payments, but Some Cities are Opting Out

NFC TIMES Exclusive – Interest continues among a number of transit authorities globally to move toward acceptance of contactless bank cards and NFC phones for fares, but rollouts have been happening in fits and starts in such countries as the U.S., where some cities there are deciding against accepting open-loop payments.

Could China Lead Way in Using QR Codes for Mobile Transit Ticketing Instead of NFC? Shanghai Metro Could Provide Answer

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While the rollout hasn’t gone quite as smoothly as planned, the Shanghai Metro’s launch of a large trial of QR code-based payments could mark a turning point for use of the technology for transit fare collection.

Amazon Launches No-Register Concept Store but Stays Mum on Expansion Plans

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Amazon opened its no-register-no-checkout Amazon Go store to the public today near its headquarters in Seattle–but those expecting a general rollout of the technology or expansion to the supermarket chain, Whole Foods Market, that the e-commerce giant bought last year will have to wait much longer.

As Luster Fades on Mobile Wallets, Start-Ups Seek to Enable Digital Payments with Physical Cards

Jan 20 2018

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While UK consumers are taking to contactless payments, they appear to have no intention of replacing their physical cards with mobile wallets, says UK-based digital payments start-up Curve.

Japan’s NTT DoCoMo, First Major Backer of Contactless-Mobile Payments, to Launch QR Code-Based Payments

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Japan’s largest mobile operator, NTT DoCoMo, the world’s first major backer of contactless-mobile payments–using a forerunner to NFC technology–is planning to launch a separate QR code-based payments service this spring.