NXP Wins Back NFC Controller Business for Samsung Flagship But Misses on Embedded Chip

NFC Times Exclusive: Samsung Electronics has switched back to an NFC controller chip from NXP Semiconductors for most of the planned shipments of its new flagship, the Galaxy S5, but the phones will not pack NXP’s embedded secure element, NFC Times has learned.

Samsung, which unveiled the Galaxy S5 last week for planned release in April, chose NXP’s highly regarded PN547 NFC radio chip over one from U.S.-based Broadcom, which supplied the Galaxy S4 with NFC technology.

But NXP’s new large memory embedded chip was not ready in time to be stacked with its NFC controller. And this–combined with continued pressure from telcos to stop offering the embedded chip, in addition to the advent of host-card emulation, among other issues–caused Samsung to decide to do without the secure element in most Galaxy S5 shipments, sources told NFC Times.

That is a big shift from the Galaxy S4, which is believed to have carried an embedded secure element in every phone shipped globally, though mobile operators, such as those making up the Isis joint venture, ordered Samsung to deactivate the chip in phones shipped to them. The  embedded secure element in the Galaxy S4, from Oberthur Technologies, using an STMicroelectronics chip, was paired with Broadcom’s NFC controller.

For the Galaxy S5, Samsung plans to include an embedded chip in selected markets, but sources say these will likely be few in number–only those where banks or other issuers have already introduced payment on embedded chips or are in the process of doing so. For these devices, Samsung will use the older NFC chip combination from the Galaxy S4–supplied by Broadcom and Oberthur, sources said.

Overall, the move by Samsung to greatly reduce the footprint of embedded chips in its flagship smartphone casts doubt on Samsung’s strategy to offer banks and other issuers an alternative to NFC SIMs–which was to be targeted in markets where most smartphones are sold on the open market. It also calls into question the viability of the embedded chip as an option for mass-market rollouts.

The new phone will run Android 4.4, so will support host-card emualtion as a default feature. But this is not the main reason most Galaxy S5s will not pack an embedded chip, sources said.

Words:

2,000

Graphics:

Major design wins: Broadcom vs. NXP

NXP's NFC controller shipments, 2011-2013

Among Topics Covered:

  • Inside story about selection of NFC technology for the Samsung Galaxy S5
  • Possible impact of NFC chip configuration in Galaxy S5 on Samsung’s embedded chip strategy.
  • How the absence of embedded chips in the GS5 will affect total shipments of embedded secure elements in 2014
  • Two markets where Samsung is definitely expected to offer the GS5 with embedded chips
  • Figures on global NFC SIM shipments in 2012, 2013 and projection for 2014
  • Details of telcos blocking Samsung embedded chips
  • Issues affecting readiness of NXP’s new embedded chip
  • Problems with Broadcom’s NFC controller
  • Samsung's overtures to Oberthur

Among companies and organizations mentioned:

Samsung Electronics
NXP Semiconductors
Broadcom
Oberthur Technologies
Google
Isis

This is premium content from NFC Times.

Read Full Article 

© NFC Times and Forthwrite Media. NFC Times content is for individual use and cannot be copied or distributed without the express permission of the publisher.

HEADLINE NEWS

Boston Transit Authority Makes Aggressive Move to Eliminate Cash in Planned Fare-Collection System

NFC TIMES EXCLUSIVE Insight – The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, or MBTA, in Boston plans to completely do away with cash fare payments on its various transport modes when it rolls out its massive new fare-collection system, an MBTA official told attendees during a recent virtual conference.

Israel Launches Nationwide Mobile-Ticketing Scheme; Moovit, Others Provide Apps

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Israel this week launched a nationwide mobile-ticketing system, enabling riders to pay for trips on buses and later on railways, with the charges assessed at the end of each month.

In-Depth: Networks Developing New Uses for SoftPOS, Though Questions Remain about Interoperability and Costs of Technology

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While the idea of letting merchants use their own NFC-enabled smartphones and tablets as acceptance devices to take contactless EMV payments is still getting off the ground, some major payments networks are already working on expanding the technology to enable consumers to tap their own devices to pay.

Planned Account-Based Ticketing Project Remains on Track in Queensland; Expected to Give Customers More Ways to Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – The new account-based ticketing system under development for the Australian state of Queensland remains on track and on budget to be fully rolled out by 2022, despite the challenges of working through the Covid-19 pandemic, Martin Bradshaw, project head and general manager for passenger transport strategy and technology for transit agency TransLink, told NFC Times through a spokesman.

Insight: Taiwan’s Dominant Fare-Collection Service Struggles to Stay Competitive in Changing E-Payments Landscape

NFC TIMES Exclusive – EasyCard Corp. remains the dominant contactless stored-value card in Taiwan, boasting of market shares above 70% in transit fare payments and retail transactions nationally amid competition from three other contactless closed-loop cards that vie for transit and low-value retail transactions across the island nation.

In-Depth: California Transport Group Launches Mobile Ticketing, Plans MaaS Rollout

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Officials in California’s Central Valley have launched an app that enables users to buy mobile tickets for bus and rail rides with seven mostly small public transit agencies, with plans to expand to ticketing for electronic car and bike sharing, along with on-demand ride-sharing and van-pool services.

UPDATED: Google Pay Launches with Fintechs in 10 New Countries, as Search Giant Unveils Revamped App; Deeper Move into Financial Services in U.S.

Nov 19 2020

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Google Pay has added its first new countries in 18 months, all of them in continental Europe and all counting digital banks and other fintechs as the vast majority of the issuers across the 10 new markets.

Transport for London Prepares for Major Fare-Collection System Contract

Nov 18 2020

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Transport for London, which runs the largest open-loop fare payments system globally, has issued a notice that it is preparing to seek proposals for a major upgrade of its revenue-collection system.

Visa and Mastercard See Continued Growth in Contactless Usage

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Both Visa and Mastercard say contactless transactions made up a growing share of all face-to-face transactions for cards and other credentials bearing their brands during the last fiscal quarter, crediting in part an increasing aversion to cash by consumers because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Contactless usage rates, however, had been increasing by nearly the same rates before the pandemic.

Apple Pay Enables Ventra Closed-Loop Fare Card in Chicago after Long Delay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple has finally made good on plans to enable fare payments through Apple Pay with the closed-loop Ventra card from the Chicago Transit Authority, or CTA, the latest major closed-loop card the tech giant has enabled in recent months.

Visa Rolls Out SoftPOS technology as It Seeks to Promote Acceptance of Contactless by More Small and Micro-Merchants

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight -  Visa is rolling out what it calls “Tap to Phone” technology to 15 global markets, as it seeks to enable millions of small and micro-merchants that now mainly take cash to also accept contactless EMV credit and debit cards and credentials on NFC devices.

Trip-Planning Apps Moovit and Transit Enable Ticketing and Payments for Another Transit Agency

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Multimodal trip-planning apps Moovit and Transit have introduced ticketing and payments in their apps for another North American transit agency, following an emerging trend for trip-planning apps to enable users to plan, book and pay for their rides all in one place. The app providers are offering the extra service as they seek ways to give users a better mobility-as-a-service experience.