BARCELONA, Spain – It’s an oft-repeated goal by NFC backers–to enable customers to use a variety of NFC services when they roam in different countries by downloading the local applications when they arrive at the airport or at the point of service.
Japanese mobile operators KDDI and Softbank Mobile have launched an NFC couponing service in a popular Korean district of Tokyo, implemented by an affiliate of South Korea’s largest mobile operator, SK Telecom.
While he announced that U.S. mobile operator Sprint will introduce more than 10 additional NFC phones supporting the Google Wallet this year, Osama Bedier, who heads the wallet program at Google, revealed few other details about how the Web giant plans to boost the wallet’s market presence.
Samsung Electronics has confirmed it has an NFC version of its Galaxy Note, though that comes as no surprise to operators in South Korea, which have been selling the tablet-smartphone hybrid with NFC inside for about two months.
While mobile operators in most other countries are still struggling to roll out even scant volumes of NFC phones that can do payment, ticketing and other applications, South Korea’s telcos have already crossed the 5 million-phone mark–including NFC versions of such high-profile devices as the Samsung Galaxy S II and Galaxy Note.
2012 was going to be the year that the new era of NFC-based mobile commerce had finally arrived–with Google Wallet rolling out widely, mobile operators in the U.S. and Europe making significant inroads with their own mobile wallets and big Asian m-commerce players generally commercializing NFC, as well.
The major Japanese and South Korean mobile operators in separate announcements today revealed details for planned cross-border NFC services–signaling the move by the telcos away from domestic contactless-mobile technology to standard NFC.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight – Another major New Zealand bank has announced plans to launch NFC payments with host-card emulation, snubbing a joint venture set up to launch SIM-based NFC on the island nation.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight – Windows 10 for phones, set to be released later this year, will support host card emulation, or HCE, based NFC payments, Microsoft revealed at a recent Windows event in China.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight –Germany-based Giesecke & Devrient confirmed it is providing the host-card emulation technology for Commonwealth Bank’s commercial HCE launch this month of Tap & Pay from the bank’s Android-based mobile-banking app.
Identiv CEO Jason Hart sounded optimistic tones about the company’s NFC tag business, particularly in “Internet of Things” applications or tags for consumer goods, during a conference call last week to discuss Identiv’s fourth quarter and full year 2014 earnings, but investors responded with less optimism.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight – France-based Gemalto, which is keen to take the spotlight off its SIM business, projects EMV cards to represent perhaps the largest expected source of revenue growth in the coming year.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight – UPDATED: Mobile point-of-sale device supplier Square has acquired payment processing component vendor Kili Technology, the same vendor that purchased NFC accessory vendor DeviceFidelity in November, but Square does not plan to keep DeviceFidelity, a source connected with Square told NFC Times.
NFC Times Exclusive –NFC Times has learned new details about how Samsung intends to make money from its planned payments service, Samsung Pay; as well as the technology architecture the OEM will use and the identity of two unannounced banks, along with a new category of issuer that is planning to participate.
NFC Times Exclusive – The public relations debacle Gemalto faced following revelations last month that U.S. and UK spy agencies had stolen keys from its SIM cards is not the only problem the France-based vendor has had to deal with regarding SIMs.
NFC Times Exclusive – MasterCard Worldwide has named James Anderson group executive for platforms, a key position inside the payment network, which is seeking to secure its role in the ecosystem as mobile payments start to gather steam, NFC Times has learned.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight – One of Australia’s largest banks, Commonwealth Bank, is launching NFC payments from its mobile-banking app using host-card emulation, having earlier tried embedded secure elements, contactless stickers and iPhone attachments.
NFC Times Exclusive Insight– Google’s recently announced API for NFC payments applications, Android Pay, is expected to support apps using host card emulation, or HCE, but also likely will support storage of keys on hardware.