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  • Editing Team 18:22 on January 22, 2014 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Apple, ,   

    Apple New Patent Combines NFC, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for Mobile Payments 

    Apple-patent-NFC-Bluetooth-WiFi-rfid-blogApple has published a new patent which uses a secure element in a mobile phone to store cardholders’ data, NFC to initiate a transaction and Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to complete the processing of a transaction and return coupons and other information to the customer’s device.

    In US patent number 20140019367, “Method to send payment data through various air interfaces without compromising user data”, Apple sets out a system that uses a secure element to store payment card data. This data could then be sent directly from the secure element to the merchant’s POS terminal via NFC in the usual way or, alternatively, NFC could be used only to initiate a transaction.

    In this case, once an initial link-up had been established via NFC, payment card data would be sent from the secure element to the application processor and then on to the POS terminal, via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, in an encrypted format, since, as Apple explains, “the confidentiality of data sent to the application processor may be compromised, e.g. by a rogue application.”

    The system could also be used to make online purchases, Apple adds, as well as in an offline retail environment.

  • Editing Team 18:01 on July 23, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    Why NFC on iPhone doesn’t Matter 

    Apple-iPhone-NFC-rfid-blogAs the expected launch date on September of the next iPhone draws near, rumors about NFC on the new iPhone have begun to appear again. Yet, whether Apple adopts NFC on iPhone won’t change much. Here’s the reason why.

    For NFC, the largest and the most compelling use case is transit (70% of the mobile payments industry agrees on that). However, just a very small fraction of transit ticketing deployments is based on contactless EMV. The bulk of transit worldwide is based on proprietary standards and protocols, e.g. ITSO in the UK, Calypso in France and some other countries, etc. All those standards and protocols have zero interoperability.

    But that’s not all. Within the UK alone, every transit operator and every local authority that implemented ITSO-based smart ticketing uses proprietary security keys.

    Hence, for NFC-enabled iPhone to be used for transit in the UK, the following needs to happen:

    ITSO must certify iPhone’s secure element to insure full compliance with applicable standards. Will Apple be even applying for such certifications in every country where smart ticketing is implemented in transit? You can guess the answer. Even if ITSO unilaterally declares NFC iPhone to be ITSO-compliant, the issue of security keys remains.

    Will Apple knock on the door of every transit operator round the world to offer them free access to iPhone’s secure element? Of course not.

    In spite of transit, there are almost 20,000 financial institutions in the U.S. who issue payment cards. Can they realistically make a deal with Apple, Samsung, etc.?

    Where does all that bring us to? Two key conclusions:

    Cards are here to stay. You cannot stick a mobile phone into millions of ATMs and ubiquitous card terminals which are present everywhere you want to pay. Add the explosive mPOS revolution to the equation and sprinkle with the fact that 90% of those mPOS devices do not have contactless interface.

    Mobile transit ticketing needs a focused and dedicated effort by a company determined to make it work. The one which can talk to every operator out there. The one which is willing to bend backwards to stitch together all those isolated standards, protocols and hundreds of security keys, and integrate them all via a single form factor. That won’t be Apple or Samsung. And that form factor won’t be a mobile phone.

  • Editing Team 15:43 on July 22, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Apple, ,   

    45% of App Developers to Integrate NFC within the Next Year 

    app-developer-NFC-rfid-blogAlthough Apple excludes NFC in its iPhone 5, companies like BlackBerry and Samsung have supported NFC. 31% of app developers are currently using the technology in their creations, with 45% to do so within 12 months.

    In fact, the research from Evans Data shows that developers are more interested in the tapping tech than voice recognition and device pairing.

    Popular use cases for NFC are security and access — such as keycards and boarding passes — while social networking and commerce are among other drivers.

    Janel Garvin, CEO of Evans Data, said: “NFC is the next evolutionary step in mobile computing. It‘s clear that it’s going to change the way we perform everyday actions such as opening a locked door, getting on an airplane, or making a purchase at a store.”

    “But developers also have plans for the technology that include games, measurements, and connections to appliances, cars or other devices. The extent to which NFC will impact us is only constrained by the imagination of the developers.”

  • Editing Team 12:04 on July 18, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    Apple NFC Rumors Return 

    Apple-iPhone5S-NFC-rumors-rfid-blogThe next iPhone, the so-called iPhone 5S, is expected to be launched on September. Recently a new round of rumors that the next iPhone will include NFC has begun to appear. The rumors are based on two sources, one in the U.S. and one in China.

    The US source is an anonymous reader of PhoneArena who has told the blog that an entry has appeared in carrier Verizon’s database for “4G LTE nano NFC SIM cards”.

    The second source is Sina Weibo blogger C Technology, who has posted photos of parts of what could be the next iPhone. The lines visible in the lower half of the image are being explained by some as belonging to an NFC antenna.

    What do readers think? Are there any grounds here for thinking Apple might at last be planning to support NFC?

  • Editing Team 11:41 on July 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Apple, , , ,   

    Is NFC Coming to the Apple iPad? 

    Apple-iPad-NFC-rfid-blogAccording to Apple Insider, the US Patent and Trademark Office has granted Apple a patent that refers to NFC technology. Although the patent isn’t specifically related to an existing product, it could mean that we’re going to see NFC capabilities in a forthcoming iPad or iPad mini.

    In iOS 7, Apple is still relying on other syncing methods, such as Wi-Fi. It will expand the capabilities of AirDrop to the iPhone and iPad, so files can be transferred wirelessly via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth without the need to email them to another user. And at the iOS 7 keynote last month, Craig Federighi made a scathing reference to NFC, saying AirDrop does away with the need to ‘bump phones’.

    Perhaps Apple has had second thoughts. AirDrop is very handy (and it also exists on OS X, which is doubly useful), but it’s an Apple-only transfer method, and users could potentially use NFC to get their device to ‘talk’ to other manufacturers’ devices. More tellingly, NFC could also help Apple to roll out new payment services, where a phone exchanges data with a payment terminal in a store.

    You can read the Apple patent document now. It shows some intriguing mockups that describe how NFC would work on an iOS tablet or phone.

  • Editing Team 09:27 on April 12, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    Rumor: Apple’s iPhone 5S Will Come with NFC 

    Apple-iPhone5S-NFC-rfid-blogMany people were disappointed when iPhone 5 was released without NFC capability, but now there is a rumor saying that NFC tag will be a must-have feature in iPhone 5S.

    People want quick settings: they want their Wi-Fi to be on as soon as they reach home; they want to switch off all alerts when they go to bed. With NFC, we believe Apple can make up for all of those, and more.

    As we know, NFC tags can be programmed to cause any reaction from the device we want upon being tapped.

    Imagine having tags that change certain settings (Wi-Fi, location, Bluetooth, DND), launch certain apps (Maps when you plug your iPhone into your car, alarm when you do the same with your bedside dock) at a tap’s notice.

    Also, pre-programmed ones can be placed strategically at various locations. Tapping the Starbucks door can fire up Passbook. The same goes for check-in counters at airports. Food eateries can have their web-pages or apps pop up when you tap their tables.

    There are a lot more possibilities out there, but above all, Apple must make it a reality.

  • Editing Team 11:28 on February 20, 2013 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , Apple, , beam, , , , , ,   

    Apple’s Passbook Gets NFC on Android Devices 

    Apple-Passbook-Android-PassWallet-NFC-rfid-blogAttido Mobile has updated its PassWallet app to allow Android devices to beam and redeem “passes” created for Apple’s Passbook via NFC.

    Apple’s Passbook app stores coupons, tickets, loyalty cards and more as .pkpass files. They are typically received by email and redeemed or validated at the point of use by presenting an on-screen 2D barcode to a reader.

    PassWallet was developed to allow Android and BlackBerry users access to these files too, and now Attido has worked with Skycore, the developers behind the CodeReadr mobile data capture platform, to add NFC beaming to the app.

    “Passes stored within PassWallet normally present pass IDs as barcodes for scanning but can now also beam pass IDs via NFC and have those IDs validated and redeemed with the CodeReadr app on NFC-enabled Android devices,” the partners say.

    “Apple created the Passbook standard for card, coupon and ticket delivery to iOS devices. My team built PassWallet to fill the gap for the Android platform,” adds Attido’s Andy Nugent. “We then expanded the technology to support NFC redemption on Android through our partnership with the CodeReadr team.”

    “Beaming NFC passes has the potential to eventually offer a fast, secure and seamless tap-to-validate process for passes,” points out Skycore CEO Rich Eicher. “As the technology matures and becomes broadly available, we expect consumers will find convenience in a simple tap.”

  • Editing Team 17:55 on February 1, 2013 Permalink | Reply
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    CalypsoKey Adds NFC to the iPhone 

    CalypsoKey-NFC-Apple-iPhone-rfid-blogMany people complain about the absence of NFC capability in Apple’s iPhone. NFC technology allows smartphones to do all sorts of interesting things such as share content or make purchases by simply holding the phone close to a compatible device. A new product called CalypsoKey has surfaced that adds NFC to the iPhone.

    The system includes a case for the iPhone, adding NFC technology which allows users to store their entire selection of NFC identification cards inside the Calypso case. Using the device you can unlock doors, check in at your office, or even open your garage.

    Calypso decided to keep things simple, avoiding the use of an app or the iPhone itself, instead providing batteryless NFC data storage in the case itself, so it never needs recharging.

    The case has a 13.56 MHz RFID antenna inside with 1k memory capacity. It also has a second 125 kHz RFID antenna built-in. The two antennas make the case compatible with most RFID-based NFC access points for locking systems. The company doesn’t show exactly how you transfer NFC data to the Key, but does mention it’s compatible with Kaba RFID locks among others.

    The NFC-enabled CalypsoLoop case sells for $119(USD) with the CalypsoRing costing $129. The CalypsoKey versions of the case are only available for the iPhone 5.

  • Editing Team 07:52 on December 19, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Apple, Juniper Research,   

    Juniper Research: iPhone 5’s Lack of NFC Has Set the Market Back by 2 Years in US&W. Europe 

    Apple-iPhone5-NFC-market-rfid-blogBefore the iPhone 5 emerged from the shadow, there was plenty of speculation about whether Apple would include NFC in the device. Yet the outcome turned out to be disappointing. Analyst Juniper Research says that Apple’s decision to keep away from NFC has set the NFC market back by 2 years in the U.S. and Western Europe.

    Except for Apple, world’s leading mobile makers have all added the tech to their handsets, including HTC, Nokia and Samsung all jumping aboard. Even RIM has brought out some NFC-enabled BlackBerrys. Thus Apple’s absence from NFC becomes conspicuous.

    In response to this, Apple’s Phil Schiller said the company sees Passbook as a better alternative, arguing that this iOS 6 feature, which allows users to store tickets and loyalty cards on their device, meets most customers’ needs and works with retailers’ existing payment infrastructure — without requiring them to invest in new point-of-sale devices.

    However, due to Apple’s evasion from NFC field, Juniper has significantly scaled back its growth estimates for North American and Western Europe. The analyst argues that Apple’s decision has reduced retailer and brand confidence in the technology, which in turn has led to fewer NFC point-of-sale rollouts and campaigns — this means fewer consumers are likely to encounter the technology. It says there is a risk of a cycle of “NFC indifference” in the short term.

    In its new research report, Juniper analyst Dr. Windsor Holden writes: “While many vendors have introduced NFC-enabled smartphones, Apple’s decision is a significant blow for the technology, particularly given its previous successes in educating the wider public about new mobile services.”

    Juniper’s report predicts that while the proportion of NFC-enabled smartphones will be “only marginally below previous estimates” by 2017, global NFC retail transaction values are expected to reach $110 billion in 2017 — significantly below the $180 billion the analyst had previously forecast.

    “Without [Apple’s] support, it will be even more difficult to persuade consumers – and retailers – to embrace what amounts to a wholly new means of payment,” Holden adds.

    The analyst talks about a “two-year lag” for NFC transaction values in North America and Western Europe compared to previous forecasts, as retailers delay point-of-sale investments.

    North America and Western Europe are the regions it expects to be most dramatically affected by Apple’s decision — other regions, such as South Korea and Japan, will be largely unaffected, with the analyst expecting “little or no impact” from Apple’s decision.

  • Editing Team 01:14 on December 6, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    FloJack Brings NFC Capability to Apple Devices 


    As is known to many, iPhone 5 lacks NFC capability, which disappoints the NFC industry. Therefore, one group of developers aimed to do something about Apple’s omission. Startup NFC application developer Flomio has created the FloJack, a pocketsize, one-ounce dongle that serves as an NFC reader, able to be plugged into newer Apple mobile phones and iPod Touches, as well as iPad and Android devices.

    The FloJack plugs into an Apple device’s headphone jack, automatically pairing a user’s device with Flomio’s NFC Quick Actions suite of apps to enable NFC reads. “Every phone, PC and touchpad has one [jack],” says Tim Ronan, one of the company’s cofounders, “which means the FloJack can easily NFC-enable any iPhone, iPad, legacy Android phone or any other smartphone out there. It was meant to act as an invitation for everyone to join the NFC party.”

    The FloJack is compatible with the iPhone 4, 4S and 5 models, as well as the iPad, iPad 2 and iPad 3, along with the fourth and fifth generations of the iPod Touch.

    It is powered with the type of standard 3-volt lithium battery that can be purchased in stores. Because the dongle goes into sleep mode when not in use, the company estimates battery life at one year.

    For those looking to develop applications for the FloJack, the company also offers an Open FloJack software developer’s kit (SDK), to allow them to add NFC functionality to their iOS (iPhone-based mobile operating system) apps.

    If funding allows, the firm plans to begin a regulatory certification process for the device, and to start sourcing components manufacturers. By March 2013, the company expects mass production to be underway.

    According to the company, the FloJack is anticipated to cost $49, while the app to operate it would be free.

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