Feeds

iPhone gets NFC tap-cash tech

Externally, though, in 500-user trial

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

Discover is to run trials of pay-by-wave for iPhones in Chicago and Salt Lake City, despite having to strap the requisite radios to the outside of the Jesus mobes' cases.

Apple's iPhone doesn't have the required Near-Field Communication hardware, and NFC Times reports that for the trials Discover will be using the iCarte case, which has an NFC radio and secure component built in. The company is reportedly already testing Android and BlackBerry handsets, but reckons iPhone compatibility is essential.

"A good number of your cardholders are going to be iPhone users. As a network, I need a certified [iPhone] option," the company told NFC Times, explaining that the removable microSD solution touted by Device Fidelity wasn't an option as it adds another layer of complexity.

Device Fidelity's solution also needs a special casing too, as the iPhone doesn't have a microSD slot, but it does mean the microSD card can be switched to a different model of handset, taking the electronic wallet with it.

Discover calls its proximity payment system Zip, as opposed to Visa's PayWave and MasterCard's PayPass. All three systems use NFC technology to make payments and all three are already used in plastic cards, so it should be possible (one day) to have a single phone with all three installed, but don't hold your breath.

While the payment systems are settling into recognisable camps, the whole business of vouchers and electronic coupons is still up for grabs. US network operators have banded together to make ISIS, a platform that hosts the payment cards; in the UK all the operators (except Three) have formed a similar consortium. Those platforms will have to compete with Google Wallet, and other players who will no doubt emerge in the next year or two.

Discover says it's happy to create an instances of Zip that will install on the ISIS platform and Google Wallet, but it's also testing coupons of its own. For the trials those will be on-screen QR Codes or just displayed discounts to be shown to the shopkeeper, but even that demonstrates that Discover is far from ceding control of what's anticipated to be an important market. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
Sorry London, Europe's top tech city is Munich
New 'Atlas of ICT Activity' finds innovation isn't happening at Silicon Roundabout
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.