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  • Editing Team 17:43 on September 10, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    BEST Intends to Introduce RFID System at All Depots in Mumbai 

    India-Mumbai-BEST-transport-cashless-card-RFID-blogThere have been some quarrels between travelers and conductors over the fare in Mumbai. And now, BEST administration has been asked by its commuters to deploy cashless cards at all depots across Mumbai.

    The public transport and utility provider had launched an experimental prepaid RFID smartcard last month at Wadala depot.

    “Cashless cards can be used to buy tickets of any denomination, especially Rs 5, 7 and 12 for which bus conductors create a fuss and insist on small change,” said BEST commuter Prakash Menon.

    The administration will accelerate the scheduled implementation in the island city and suburbs, said Ashok Patil, committee chairperson of BEST. “Those who already have daily bus pass ID cards can use the same to top up any amount and use it for purchasing tickets,”Patil added. It is said that other depots will also begin launching the facility from this month.

    “Whenever a new system is introduced, we usually do it in phases,” a BEST spokesperson said. “In this case, we need to conduct trial runs at Wadala depot. Such an exercise will help us rectify any problems and streamline the process before it is launched at the other depots,” he added.

    Transport activist Sunil Mone said that the RFID card should be integrated with the smartcards of railways, mono and Metro rail, in order to facilitate seamless travel.

    At the same time, BEST also has plan to introduce GPS system in all buses soon. With the help of an SMS alert system, passengers will be able to get the estimated time of arrival of the next bus.

     
  • Editing Team 11:24 on August 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    Singapore Telcos Have Launched NFC Mobile Wallets 

    Singapore-telcos-SingTel-M1-NFC-mobile-wallet-rfid-blogLast year, a consortium, including European vendor Gemalto Citibank, DBS Bank and pre-paid card specialist EZ-Link, was set up by Singapore’s government, in order to build a S$40 million interoperable NFC infrastructure for mobile payments.

    Earlier this month, StarHub was the first telco to launch an NFC wallet which used the infrastructure. Now M1 and SingTel have joined in.

    According to SingTel, it has developed a mobile payments service with EZ-Link. With its NFC SIM, customers can make cashless payments by tapping NFC-enabled smartphones at terminals at over 20,000 points that accept EZ-Link, such as taxis, supermarkets and fast food chains.

    Download the EZ-Link app from the Google Play Store for use on NFC-enabled Android mobile handsets, and users can check transaction history and balances, and top-up the purse with any debit or credit card.

    The app can be topped-up over-the-air, which means that SingTel customers can easily download and top-up on the go, with their NFC-enabled phone and credit cards.

    “The NFC solution that we are launching today is the first of many innovative mobile services that SingTel will unveil. We will progressively launch differentiated services that enhance our customers’ lifestyles and provide them with a unique mobile commerce experience, ranging from payments to value-added services.” says Gan Siok Hoon, VP, m-commerce, SingTel.

    At the same time, M1 has also been working with EZ-Link and MasterCard on its wallet. Customers who buy an NFC SIM and certified handset (Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy S Advance or Sony Xperia S) will be able to make contactless payments at merchants that accept Paypass and EZ-Link.

    Using M1 Mobile Wallet, users can obtain information on available NFC services, as well as manage their account and settings, such as default cards, initiating payments, viewing transaction details and password amendments. M1 has also implemented a wallet passcode as an additional security measure, which is required before processing manual payment transactions.

     
  • Editing Team 14:28 on August 24, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    NFC Payments Coming to McDonald’s 

    McDonalds-NFC-payment-PayPal-rfid-blogSince the potential of NFC mobile payments is so attractive, the mobile payment war is heating up. Companies are racing to become the default mobile payment platform at your favorite fast food franchise.

    According to a new report, McDonald’s is currently testing a mobile payment deployment with PayPal, at its 30 locations in France. The sites are already wired for NFC, and therefore already accept tap-to pay for hamburgers.

    Although neither company has made any official announcement, the technology is “coming within the next 24 months or so,” according to a McDonald’s spokesperson.

    This system is different from PayPal’s two existing in-store payment systems. The French trial features a smartphone app or a website from which customers can order and pay for food with their PayPal account, using their NFC-enabled smartphones. The customer can then pick up the food in a separate line, bypassing the normal ordering process.

    To PayPal, it is a significant deal. Bagging Starbucks is a big win for Square, bagging McDonalds would be an even-bigger win for PayPal, as with over 30,000 restaurants worldwide, McDonald’s potential deal with the payments company would represent a larger business and cultural footprint for PayPal than perhaps any other mobile payments company in operation.

    PayPal’s pay-with-an-app payment system in France will directly compete with the Pay with Square system. Some may wonder why PayPal — a company that tends to hold its plans very close to the vest — let news about the small trial in France leak to the press. Well, maybe PayPal wants the marketplace to be aware that it is working in this area, too.

     
  • Editing Team 15:29 on August 22, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , cashless, , , , , , , , , , ,   

    NFC/RFID Enhancing Events 

    NFC-bracelet-wristband-events-festivals-mobile-payment-rfid-blogBringing a bulging wallet for cash and credit cards, fishing through pocket for some change, waiting in extremely long lines for beer, or simply lacking the accessibility to check-in or upload to Facebook — all these could destroy an originally pleasant event. Consequently, event organizers have been looking for ways to enhance events and strive to offer attendees with convenience, simplicity and interaction. Now all of these can be simply achieved via the implementation of NFC technology.

    The integration of NFC into mobile devices, wristbands and smart cards allows users to easily make a contactless payment, share content and gain access to social media, which has greatly sparked the interest of event organizers everywhere. A number of events such as sports, entertainment and leisure realms have commenced to use NFC technology as a catalyst.

    Today, a host of event vendors are now accepting contactless payments via NFC stickers affixed to the back of mobile devices or through means of an NFC-enabled wristband. At popular, highly-visited music festivals, ticketholders are now being given the unprecedented option of loading up “cash” on their wrist, which is later deactivated at completion of the festival, with the remaining unused amount reloaded to the owner’s credit/debit card account. All in all, NFC is appearing more frequently in all kinds of events, festivals and theme parks.

    GALA EVENTS

    The opening night Gala at the New York Public Library offered nearly 30,000 different cocktails, created by over 150 different bartenders, which made it difficult for attendees to “like” a particular cocktail on social media.

    In order to solve this problem, guests were issued NFC-enabled bracelets, and then instructed to tap the NFC readers positioned atop each bar. From here, guests had the ability to check-in on Facebook or Twitter accounts, automatically upload pictures at the party’s web-connected photo booths, post a real-time message by merely tapping touch-point on the library walls, and “like” for the cocktails they were consuming.

    Furthermore, smartposters were strategically positioned throughout the event, offering guests the unprecedented opportunity to enter raffles via a simple tap of their NFC-enabled wristband.

    THEME PARKS

    Disney World, one of the most renowned tourist locations in the world, wants to bring guests more happiness. It has unveiled plans to roll out a FastPass system employing RFID technology and iPads to accelerate the ticketing queues.

    Guests will select and receive a list of the FastPass attractions they’ve chosen. They will then be granted an RFID wristband to wave by the specifically-designed-for-FastPass scanners in order to check-in upon arrival to the ride. The wristbands are embedded with RFID chips, which have been rumored to include the names, credit card information and favorite attraction data ahead of your arrivals, allowing for your identity and data to be encrypted directly on it, thus acting as your park ticket.

    According to Disney Projects, when the guests arrive at their reserved time, they will wave their RFID band by a sensor, which sends their reservation information to a nearby cast member’s iPad. The RFID-based system is expected to replace the existing system of distributing paper FastPass tickets with a digital format that lets people bypass long queues and indicates when they can enter a ride or a show.

    Additionally, the RFID capabilities of the wristband would communicate with sensors deployed throughout the parks and resorts, which can then trigger interactive features. Envision yourself walking up to Space Mountain, where you are then greeted by name. One of the interactive places ever may soon become even more interactive.

    MUSIC FESTIVALS

    In a large-scale festival, all kinds of problems could appear — from losing wallets in the mud, trying to locate ATM machines, having trouble exchanging or uploading social media data, tracking people and possessions, etc. Thus, events like Barclays Wireless Festival, Coachella Music Festival, Austin City Limits Music Festival, Bonnaroo Festival, Electric Zoo, Lollapalooza and Glastonbury Festival have deployed or considered RFID technology. Besides solving all the problems above, using RFID, organizers can expedite fast-track entry, VIP upgrades and offer access to various perks and accommodations.

    In the UK’s first cashless event, the Wireless Festival provided event-goers with NFC-enabled wristbands to “wave and pay” for goods, significantly downsizing line times for food, memorabilia and most of all, alcohol. This is not the only British music festival rolling out NFC wristbands this summer, as an emerging number of organizers have developed an acquired taste in the convenience and ease of this contactless technology.

    At the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, 30,000 fans signed up to “live click” throughout the event, commencing a new era and digital age in social media. Using RFID-enabled bands, registered ticketholders were able to check-in, update their status on Facebook, as well as have the availability to a collection of other individualized options tailored to each respective guest, thus enhancing their event experience. Registered guests can automatically “check-in” upon arrival on various “touch points” located throughout the grounds.

    All these wristbands provide enhanced e-ticketing, cashless payment and access control, subsequently reducing lines and eliminating fraudsters, providing secure and speedy payments, and boosting the overall fan experience.

    In terms of tracking guests, checkpoint zones are set up to track what zone an attendee has just exited and entered, theoretically placing them in a zone at a specific time and place. This allows for event organizers to track traffic flows to improve planning for succeeding festivals. It also provides means of assistance when it comes to theft and other forms of crime.

    SPORTING EVENTS

    Olympic Games is the sporting world’s largest global competition, with hundreds of millions of visitors from different nations flooding into the host city. An advanced technology like contactless payment can alleviate many problems.

    Samsung and Visa have worked together to install over 3,000 terminals on the 2012 London Olympic grounds to coincide with its official payment app, “payWave”.

    Visitors were granted the option to use NFC to purchase snacks and memorabilia. Consumers throughout London were granted the opportunity to experience NFC and become educated on it, which helped facilitate the speedy universal adoption of the technology in the near future.

     
  • Editing Team 10:04 on August 17, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cashless, , , ,   

    Hungary Festivals Go Cashless Using RFID Wristband 

    Metapay introduced an RFID-based wristband solution designed specifically for event planners and festival organizers.

    The RFID-based wristband is multifunctional with support for secure access control, in addition to cashless payments. In fact, the service has already processed nearly 1.1 million transactions at three festivals in Hungary this summer.

    Sziget Festival, one of the largest music and cultural festivals in Europe, is using all of the services that Metapay has to offer, including Metapay Festivalcard the cashless payment system, Maestro PayPass and MasterCard Pay Pass products and the RFID-based wristband solution.

    Developed by the company itself, Metapay uses this same RFID-based electronic access control system at its own facilities. Staff enters Metapay facilities by using their wristband in which a built-in chip identifies them.

    Hungary-festivals-cashless-wristband-rfid-blog

     
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