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  • 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 18:06 on September 24, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    First Bout between Passbook and NFC 

    Apple-iPhone5-Passbook-iOS6-NFC-rfid-blogWhen Apple announced iPhone 5 without NFC, some people were upset. Yet if you look around the iPhone 5, you may find another NFC alternative — Passbook. The company has released the first related apps for Passbook. Now iPhone users can get their first taste of what the new feature can do.

    Passbook is a new application that operates on iOS 6. It can store and take the place of gift cards, loyalty cards and boarding passes, etc.

    Here is the full list of Passbook compatible apps (of Sept. 19):

    •Fandango Movie – Times & Tickets

    •Live Nation

    •TicketMaster

    •MLB.com At Bat

    •Sephora to Go

    •Walgreens

    •Lufthansa

    However, the list is relatively shorter than the number of company apps Apple showed off at the publication of Passbook.

    We should expect to see Delta Airlines, American Airlines, United Airlines, Starbucks, Target, Amtrak, W Hotels and Apple’s own retail store all join the list, if Apple succeeds in those demos.

    Passbook vs. NFC

    If you know what NFC can do, you may find it very similar to Passbook.

    With the proper apps, NFC is able to do most of what Passbook can do. The difference is that NFC relies on devices to communicate with each other while Passbook uses the display to allow vendors to scan data.

    Many had expected NFC to be on the new smartphone, so Apple has been blasted for the omission since the announcement.

    Apple Senior VP Phil Schiller defended the decision by saying that he doubted if NFC could really solve any current problems and Passbook can service the needs of today’s customers.

    Whether or not Passbook can truly outshine NFC is only something time, the marketplace and Apple’s App Store will tell.

     
  • Editing Team 13:14 on September 13, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone 5, ,   

    Here Finally Comes iPhone 5, Yet WITHOUT NFC 

    iPhone5-without-NFC-rfid-blog

    After months of speculation, Apple finally revealed its new version of iPhone — the iPhone 5, yet the expected NFC capability is noticeably absent.

    The new iPhone is not a new smartphone but a better one. Here are the main features of the new device:

    ■Larger screen — with 4-inch display, taller than the iPhone 4S

    ■Thinner at 7.5mm, 20% lighter

    ■Faster connectivity

    ■Supporting for 4G LTE networks

    ■Running on iOS 6, which includes new Passbook and Maps applications

    The new device will be available for both white and black. Pre-orders for the smartphone can be made from Sept. 14th, while it will be released in the UK on week later on Sept. 21st, the same day as the US. The 16GB version of the smartphone will cost $199, the 32GB $299 and the 64GB $399. However, once the iPhone 5 has launched, you’ll be unable to get an iPhone 3GS, which has discontinued.

    Skipping NFC in the iPhone 5 could cost Apple a great deal

    Analyst says that Apple has missed an opportunity to lead the industry in the development of NFC.

    NFC technology enables smartphones to communicate with other NFC-enabled devices, allowing users to purchase goods and services by tapping their smartphones against a reader or simply “bumping” against another device to share content. NFC technology provides real opportunity to change the way people interact with their devices and payment systems they use every day.

    “A lot of the infrastructure around NFC is starting to be built out like payment systems and the ability to transfer content between phones. It is like back in the day when Wi-Fi was seen as a high-end technology and now it’s standard — we are going to see NFC go the same way.”

     
  • Editing Team 21:33 on September 12, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    Omitting NFC in the iPhone 5 could be a Fatal Mistake to Apple 

    iPhone5-NFC-Apple-rfid-blogWhile some time ago, leaked photos of purported iPhone 5 parts showed a mysterious square chip which originally believed to be an NFC chip, not long after that, new rumors suggested that there will be no NFC chip in iPhone 5, since the metal back will seriously block the signal from reaching the chip.

    Right now we don’t know whether the rumors are true or false, however, skipping NFC in the iPhone 5 will cost Apple dearly.

    Above all, NFC plays an important role in mobile payments. Although there are two potential alternatives — Bluetooth Low-Energy and QR code based tokens, neither of them are as fast and convenient as NFC. Replacing wallets with something digital is just a matter of time, for people are always seeking more convenient, efficient and secure ways to pay. Thus, using smartphones would be a good choice. With a big name, Apple could be the choice of most people.

    Although NFC is still far from prevalent for the time being, Apple has the power to make it mainstream. Apple already has over 400 million active credit card accounts on file, so if Apple’s users link them to a mobile payment system tied to the iPhone, it would greatly push forward the technology.

    Using NFC payments would work like direct mobile billing, allowing you to charge a payment to your mobile account which then appears on your monthly carrier bill. Apple could do something similar with iTunes, so that users can charge anything from gas to groceries to the credit card on file in their iTunes account.

    Apple now has at least 6 patents related to mobile payments, but the company has indicated that it plans to move slowly on mobile payments. It seems Apple likes to let its competitors do their market research for them.

    However, doing so requires Apple a lot of money. Why would Apple intentionally avoid such a lucrative business when it already has 250 million iPhones in people’s pockets and 400 million credit cards on file?

    All in all, omitting NFC in the iPhone 5 could be a fatal mistake for Apple. It would lag it a year behind Android devices that already contain NFC functionality and severely cripple Apple’s promising PassBook app in iOS 6.

    But maybe there’s still hope. Whether Apple will respond to the majority’s expects or go its own way, let’s just wait for the final answer.

     
  • Editing Team 07:27 on September 12, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    LevelUp Deploys NFC in Advance of Reported iPhone 5 Launch 

    LevelUp-NFC-hardware-iPhone5-rfid-blogLevelUp is adding NFC support to its free mobile payments solution, debuting new hardware for merchants, and allowing them to make payments using any NFC-enabled phone, the Boston-based startup announced on Sept. 6th. This addition to its technology is a clear move to compete with its competitor ISIS, which already uses NFC technology in its carrier-backed mobile payments solution.

    LevelUp CEO Seth Priebatsch said in an interview that NFC support is something they’ve been planning for a while, and even though it hasn’t been confirmed that the new iPhone 5 will support it (we’ll likely find out on September 12th), they felt now was the time to add it in. “I’m not convinced NFC will be mainstream in six months, but I do think it will 3-5 years,” Priebatsch said in an interview. “NFC is a good technology, and it’s going to be around for a while. But if it doesn’t pick up momentum, something else will, so our new hardware can be easily upgraded to support other forms of payment.”

    Even if the new iPhone doesn’t include NFC, anyone with an NFC-enabled Android phone will still be able to use the new hardware to pay. Priebatsch said, if another technology like Bluetooth 4.0 becomes popular, merchants can open up the new terminal and replace the chip. He said that the ultimate goal is to integrate with whatever method consumers want to use to pay. “Our new NFC hardware is part of our approach to be able to integrate with whatever is out there and make LevelUp work for everyone.”

    To take advantage of the new system, consumers will have to download the LevelUp app for Android or iPhone, link their credit or debit card to their account, and can get a QR code they can scan at any supported merchant, or pay via NFC by tapping their phone on the new counter-top hardware for merchants.

    LevelUp recently cut its merchant fees, in order to compete against mobile payments leaders Square and PayPal. It is also working on building out their partnerships. Although it might not have big-name partnerships like Square’s recent Starbucks announcement, the company is willing to do whatever it takes to compete in the mobile payments arena. With 250,000 active users who are spending a total of $2 million a month, and one million transactions processed since launch, the company seems to be on the right track.

     
  • Editing Team 11:17 on August 20, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone 5, ,   

    More Indication for NFC on Apple’s Next iPhone 

    Apple-iPhone5-NFC-Authentec-rfid-blogOn July 27th, seemingly out of nowhere, fingerprint sensor provider AuthenTec announced in a regulatory filing that it had agreed to a $356 million acquisition offer from Apple. Recently, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has filed an examination of a proxy statement linked to Apple’s acquisition of AuthenTec, which has led to renewed speculation that the next iPhone/iPhone 5 will include an NFC-enabled version of the Apple Passbook mobile wallet app announced in June.

    A detailed analysis of the filing produced by The Next Web indicates that the iPhone maker first began discussions with AuthenTec late in 2011 and originally planned to license the company’s new technology. In May, however, when AuthenTec was preparing to launch its latest fingerprint reader, which is specifically designed to protect access to NFC mobile wallets, discussions switched from licensing to outright acquisition — and Apple pressed AuthenTec for a quick completion.

    Besides Apple’s acquisition of AuthenTec, data found in code from an iPhone prototype and new patent requests from Apple such as iTunes all indicate a huge possibility that the next iPhone would equip with NFC.

    Recently, alleged pictures of the logic board of the next iPhone surfaced on the Internet. One can already draw conclusions about the shape of the new iPhone. Experts are now confident that new antenna ports also indicate changes in the WLAN, LTE and NFC sector.

    New iOS features include an extension of Apple’s payment service, and additionally point to the use of NFC. This feature requires much less technical effort than the LTE implementation. Apparently, Apple’s iPhone 5 continues even one step further and has integrated the Passbook technology into the new operating system iOS 6. Obviously, Apple wants to compete with Google Wallet payment service.

    By far, no date for the launch of iPhone 5 has yet been announced by Apple, but most observers now expect it to be unveiled on 12 September.

     
  • Editing Team 14:30 on July 27, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , iPhone 5,   

    Does Apple Have More Ambitions for NFC? 

    Apple-patent-NFC-rfid-blog

    It has been said that Apple will equip NFC functionality in its next iPhone, which will work with PassBook to provide mobile wallet functionality to users, but it’s more than that.

    Recently US Patent and Trademark Office announced a new patent for Apple, which suggested that Apple was going to bring out more NFC functionalities than just a mobile wallet app. The patent was applied during 2009 to 2010. There were dozens of illustrations showing that the iPhone can interact with many devices and control them, including a TV, a DVR, a standalone camera and even a projector.

    Patently Apple introduced that the system can interact and control, for example, iOS devices, standalone TVs and Apple TVs. In the future, Apple TV will be able to control cables, satellite television programming and video game play via a video game controller. It will surely be a great step forward for Apple if users can use a standard controller to play high-end PGR video games.

    Yet Apple wants more than that. They expect the NFC-equipped iOS devices to control standalone cameras, projectors, in-home security systems, lawn sprinkler systems, your thermostat, garage door, etc. iOS devices will eventually support NFC. Besides, Apple will also develop more new applications and other applications similar to iWallet. But as to whether the next iPhone will equip with NFC, let’s just look forward to it.

     
  • Editing Team 16:44 on July 24, 2012 Permalink | Reply
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    NFC-equipped Smartphones 

    phones-with-NFC-rfid-blogWhen it comes to phones with Near Field Communication (NFC) capabilities today, people often talk about Apple, as it is a tiny minority which has not introduced an NFC-enabled phone to the market among major smartphone makers.

    While rumors suggest that Apple’s next version of iPhone, the iPhone 5, will equip with an NFC chip, Apple has not said anything publicly about it. Reports claim that Apple is concerned about NFC security.

    Even though, a number of other smartphone manufacturers are testing the waters with NFC-enabled phones. At the 2012 London Olympic Games, Samsung and Visa are working together to offer each Olympic athlete a new Samsung Galaxy S III with NFC and an Olympic mobile wallet app, so that the athletes will be able to use the phones to access events and make payments during the Games.

    Below is a list of NFC-enabled phones that are available today, by operating system. And if this isn’t enough to make your head spin, see a more comprehensive list of phones available worldwide, and those coming within the year, including tablets and PDAs here.

    Android

    Acer E320 Liquid Express

    Acer Cloud Mobile

    Acer Liquid Glow

    Fujitsu Arrows μ F-07D

    Google Galaxy Nexus

    Google Nexus 7, Q, S

    Motorola Droid Razr

    HTC Droid Incredible 4G LTE,

    HTC Evo 4G LTE

    HTC One X

    Lenovo K800

    LG Optimus LTE, Net, Vu, L5, L7

    LG Viper

    Panasonic Eluga

    Samsung Galaxy S Blaze

    Samsung Advance, Mini 2, Ace 2

    Sony Xperia Sola, P, Ion

    BlackBerry

    BlackBerry Bold 9790, 9900, 9930

    BlackBerry Curve 9350, 9360, 9370, 9380

    Windows

    DLI 9000

    Nokia Lumina 610 NFC

    Toshiba TG01

    Windows Phone 8 (coming this fall)

    ZTE Orbit

    The good news is that if you want to use NFC to make wireless payments, there are workarounds for Android phones and iPhones. Android users can insert an NFC-enabled MicroSD card into their phones and affix a booster sticker to the inside of their battery cover to amplify the NFC signal. iPhone users can use Moneto’s patented iPhone case embedded with NFC.

     
  • Editing Team 11:12 on July 12, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: iPhone 5, iTravel, , ,   

    IPhone 5 May Take Us into the “iTravel” Era 

    iPhone5-iTravel-nfc-rfid-blogYesterday Apple has been approved a new patent called the iTravel which could enable the next iPhone to be used to solve almost any reservation during your travelling.

    A key feature of iTravel is to enable paperless ticketing and wireless check-in systems similar to Qantas Next-Generation Check-in.

    The app could be used to make bookings for flights, hotels, car rentals and even trains and buses, and help track along the way. For example, travel reservations may be made via the management application or may be retrieved from an email, a website, another NFC-enabled device, or a carrier-provided confirmation number.

    These RFID-featured services would rely on short-range Near Field Communications (NFC) technology being built into the device, which means the iPhone 5 will stand a good chance of supporting NFC, even though Apple has not publicly discussed it.

    NFC’s main claim to fame has been the ability to make fast and convenient payments as well as easy data transfer between devices. However, despite adoption by major mobile manufacturers, networks and vendors around the world, it has yet to gain the sort of mainstream traction, which is one of the reasons Apple has yet to get on board.

     
  • Editing Team 11:14 on July 9, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: iPhone 5, , ,   

    IPhone 5 with NFC Sees the Possibility 

    iphone5-nfc-rfid-blogWhile the next iPhone (or iPhone 5, as many people are calling it) is already rumored to have a larger display and a different design, new rumors suggest the phone will also have Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. NFC chips enable people to send data between two NFC-equipped devices. You can tap a phone to a credit card reader to pay, for instance, or bump two phones gently together to send photos or video from one to the other.

     According to the Apple blog 9to5Mac, data found in code for the next iPhone reveals that the phone will have NFC controllers.

     Apple showed off the next version of its iPhone and iPad operating system — iOS 6 — earlier this month at its WWDC conference. Included in the software is an app called Passbook, which helps users to store electronic edition of bill, ticket, boarding check and other information. Many speculate that this app will have NFC capabilities.

    Apple is expected to release the next iPhone in the second half of the year, perhaps in September or October, close to a year after the iPhone 4S was released. Apple has not said anything publicly about the next version of its iPhone.

    NFC technology is still in its infancy, but Google has already entered this field. Some Android phones have already equipped NFC module and Google is still popularizing its Google Wallet service. Seen from the opportunity, it’s a good time for Apple to enter this newly-born field.

     
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