Friday, December 2, 2011

HID Global and Sony Announce NFC-Enabled Contactless Smart Card Reader Platform for Global Laptop and Mobile Device Market

Companies Demonstrated Jointly Developed Solution at CARTES & IDentification 2011
HID Global and Sony Corporation announced a jointly developed contactless smart card reader platform that embeds secure access control capabilities and Near Field Communication (NFC) functionality into laptops and other mobile devices. The platform holds a secure element that stores cryptographic keys which secure the authenticity and integrity of user credentials. It supports widely used contactless technologies for applications ranging from physical access control and identity assurance at the desktop to transit-fare, point-of-sale collection and loyalty programs.
The jointly developed NFC global reader platform is the result of a strategic partnership that Sony and HID Global announced last year. Both companies  demonstrated the platform during the CARTES & IDentification 2011 conference in Paris, where it was be shown reading a variety of card technologies using NFC, a short-range wireless technology that is now fueling a wide range of new mobile access control applications.
In continuing to work closely with the NFC Forum in support of market-driven compliance and interoperability goals, the reader platform has been provided to the NFC Forum Certification Program as a reference sample to assist in the validation of the Digital Protocol test tools. The reader platform will also be submitted for certification.
“HID Global and Sony have delivered an exciting new embedded reader platform that will be offered to all manufacturers of laptops and other mobile devices,” said Debra Spitler, vice president of mobile access solutions with HID Global. “HID Global continues to expand our access control system and card services businesses while bringing our partners and customers new products and deployment models that improve user security, flexibility and convenience.”
“We are very pleased with this first solution from our strategic partnership with HID Global,” said Yoshihiko Kawakami, general manager of sales with Sony’s FeliCa Business Division. “This is an important milestone that moves our FeliCa contactless card technology and NFC solutions into the global market. By releasing the new reader platform, we will play a role in providing a part of the NFC infrastructure in the global NFC era.”
The jointly developed platform supports Sony’s FeliCa™ technology, HID Global’s iCLASS® and iCLASS SET credentials, MIFARE® DESFire EV1 credentials, and other broadly adopted technologies supporting the ISO/IEC 14443 Type A/B contactless smart card standard using the T=CL contactless transmission protocol. The solution also supports the industry-standard PC/SC Version 2.0 specification for the programming interfaces between PC applications, the operating system and smart cards. It is also prepared to further support the proximity features of the next major release of the Microsoft® Windows® operating system which enable communication between NFC tags and devices (mobile phones or computers) using a tap gesture, as well as the Android operating system for tablet products.
AvailabilitySony and HID Global have released a complete reference design for the jointly developed embedded NFC module, and will also provide comprehensive developer support to minimize product development requirements and speed time-to-market schedules for PC OEMs. During CARTES & IDentification 2011, the two companies showed laptop computers running HID Global’s naviGO™ credential management software and a number of Sony FeliCa applications, including the Sony FeliCa Launcher platform service as well as the company’s e-Money Viewer widget. The companies also showed the platform operating with Sony’s NFC Dynamic Tag, a FeliCa wireless module with a cable interface that enables data transmission between NFC reader/writers and other electronic equipment and devices.
About HID Global
HID Global is the trusted source for secure identity solutions for millions of customers around the world. Recognized for robust quality, innovative designs and industry leadership, HID Global is the supplier of choice for OEMs, system integrators, and application developers serving a variety of markets. These markets include physical and logical access control, including strong authentication and credential management; card printing and personalization; highly secure government ID; and identification technologies used in animal ID and industry and logistics applications. The company's primary brands include HID®, ActivIdentity™, FARGO®, and LaserCard®. Headquartered in Irvine, California, HID Global has over 2,100 employees worldwide and operates international offices that support more than 100 countries. HID Global is an ASSA ABLOY Group brand.
About Sony Corporation
Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and online businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading electronics and entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $87 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2011.

Javelin Calls Chase Mobile Banking "Best in Class"

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Chase Awarded Javelin Strategy & Research’s “Best in Class” for Mobile Banking in 2011

--Chase Beats 24 Banks for Top Mobile Banking Spot--
SAN FRANCISCO--()--Chase announced today that Javelin Strategy & Research recently awarded them “Best in Class” for mobile banking 2011, beating 24 of the largest retail banking financial institutions measured by deposits. According to Javelin’s recently-released third Mobile Banking Scorecard, Chase won by providing a broad range of features and specialty apps to complement its mobile offering, including person‐to‐person transfers through Chase QuickPay SM, account rewards, and mobile remote deposit capture via Chase QuickDeposit SM.
“As more of our customers recognize Chase Mobile Banking as a way to help manage their financial lives virtually anywhere, anytime, we will continue to develop exciting new capabilities that put banking at our customers’ fingertips, enabling a quick and convenient way to view, track and move their money.”
“We are extremely honored to receive this award from Javelin naming us a frontrunner in mobile banking,” said Jack Stephenson, managing director of Mobile, Ecommerce and Payments. “As more of our customers recognize Chase Mobile Banking as a way to help manage their financial lives virtually anywhere, anytime, we will continue to develop exciting new capabilities that put banking at our customers’ fingertips, enabling a quick and convenient way to view, track and move their money.”
Continuing to respond to customers’ needs for speed, access and security, Chase has developed a number of new mobile banking initiatives in 2011:
  • By the end of December, the Chase Mobile Banking native application will be on all major platforms, including iPhone®, iPod® Touch, iPad®, Android™, and the Amazon Kindle Fire tablet, where Chase will be the only major financial institution offering a mobile banking app on the Amazon Appstore. The app is expected to be available for BlackBerry® smartphones by the end of 2011.
  • Award-winning Chase QuickDepositSM, where customers snap a picture (front and back) of a check and deposit it via a mobile device, now allows deposits of up to $2,000 daily and $5,000 monthly. Since the beginning of 2011, customers have deposited over $1.5 billion remotely; since 2010, customers have deposited a total of $2.03 billion via Chase QuickDeposit.
  • Chase Person-to-Person QuickPaySM now allows customers to send money to or receive money from nearly anyone using their mobile number in addition to their email address. Since the beginning of 2011, more than 2 million customers have sent more than $1.4 billion through Chase QuickPaySM. The feature is expected to debut on the iPad before the holidays.
  • Banking with Chase Online and Chase Mobile® is safe, secured using encryption technology and guaranteed. Chase’s robust encryption technology helps safeguard all mobile transactions and helps protect customer information as it travels the Internet or to and from a mobile device. Established user IDs and passwords are necessary to access account information and images do not reside on the mobile device, which helps protect personal information in case of theft. Consumers are 100% reimbursed for unauthorized transfers to or from their personal Chase checking and savings account initiated through the Online and Mobile Bill Payment and Transfer Service. (Guarantee subject to limitations.)*
Today’s Javelin’s Best in Class Award joins other Chase Mobile Banking accolades received over the last year, including:
  • Best Use of Smartphone Camera – 2011 Webby
  • 2010 Top Ten App – Mobile Marketer
  • Best Tech Ideas of the Year– 2010 Pogie
  • #2 Top iPhone App 2010 – Tech Crunch
The Javelin Scorecard also recognized Chase for being at the vanguard of the “triple play”offering: enabling customers to SMS text-bank, easily download its mobile banking app, and allowing customers to access the Chase mobile web site via their phone.
“Financial institutions like Chase are providing the most forward‐thinking mobile banking services in the industry, pushing the envelope in money movement and advanced functionality,” said Mary Monahan, executive vice president and research director for Mobile at Javelin. “Chase’s number-one spot is well-deserved, and we look forward to seeing more innovative mobile banking products from them in the years to come.”
The study examines the 23 mobile banking offerings of the 25 largest retail banking financial institutions. More than 60 different criteria were collected, weighted, and tabulated for comparison, covering the key areas of mobile banking: mobile access, general features, SMS text features, marketing, and security. Based on a quantitative assessment of the criteria, the best‐in-class mobile banking services were identified and awarded a gold, silver, or bronze status.
In addition to winning first place for overall mobile banking features and functionality, Chase won the SMS Text Banking and Alerting category for offering a greater array of SMS text banking features than the other banks. Chase is one of the few banks in the study that offers two-way text banking to its customers, a feature that allows customers to receive a text of their balances and more after simply texting Chase a number. Chase also scored high marks (4 out of 5) in another category – Best Integrated Mobile Banking App.
The study also uncovered the following trends:
  • Three‐fourths of consumers are satisfied with the mobile banking offerings from their primary bank. Customers who rate themselves “very satisfied” are seen with downloadable apps vs. SMS text or browser‐based banking
  • 4 in 10 smartphone owners, and nearly half of all iPhone owners desire mobile remote deposit capture
  • More than 1 in 10 use mobile banking more than 15 times a month
  • Half of smartphone owners use mobile banking
  • The best mobile banking solutions, such as Chase Mobile Banking, are moving beyond money monitoring and into money movement, giving customers exciting new capabilities that enable them to migrate from ‘viewing’ to ‘doing’
Chase charges no fees to use mobile banking, but standard text message and data rates may apply from a customer’s wireless provider.
The mobile banking effort complements the extensive ways customers can bank with Chase: through online banking, telephone banking, nearly 5,300 branches and more than 16,200 ATMs.
Javelin Strategy & Research is the leading provider of quantitative and qualitative research focused on the global financial services industry. Our extensive quantitative data and deep analyst experience enable us to forecast the direction of the financial services market and make recommendations that empower you and your business to succeed.

Record Volume for Online Shopping says Chase Paymentech

Chase Paymentech Cyber Holiday Pulse Index Shows Record Online Shopping Volume over Black Friday and Cyber Monday

Black Friday and Cyber Weekend Results Show Ecommerce Sales Growth Exceeding 24 Percent Year over Year
DALLAS--()--Chase Paymentech, a leading merchant acquirer and payment processor, today announced season to date results from the Cyber Holiday Pulse Index, including Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The Pulse Index provides an inside look at consumer online shopping trends for these key shopping days and throughout the holiday shopping season.
“In addition, ecommerce is now an established part of the Black Friday phenomenon, as consumers take advantage of online shopping deals as well as Black Friday in-store bargains.”
For the holiday weekend including Black Friday, the Pulse Index, which tracks sales and transactions for 50 top e-retailers, indicated a 24 percent increase in sales and a dramatic 36 percent increase in transactions over the same period last year. On Tuesday, November 29, 2011 when many Cyber Monday purchases actually settled, the Pulse Index set a single-day record for both transactions and settled sales, with transactions up 37 percent year over year.
“Cyber Monday has historically been the biggest single day of the season, and so far that’s true again,” Mike Duffy, president of Chase Paymentech said, “In addition, ecommerce is now an established part of the Black Friday phenomenon, as consumers take advantage of online shopping deals as well as Black Friday in-store bargains.”
For the holiday season to date, which began the first week of November, 2011, transactions are up 40 percent, and sales are up 26 percent year over year. The average ticket values remain down, falling around 9 percent from last year. This may be a symptom of increasing sales of digital goods and of discounting early in the season.
With early season results exceeding industry expectations, Pulse will track if consumers continue to go online for their gift purchases. In previous years, data for the weeks following the Cyber weekend showed sustained volume, demonstrating the growing strength of the online channel.
The Pulse Index is updated with online shopping statistics every business day throughout the holiday period, from November 1, 2011 through January 6, 2012. Insights, analysis and commentary will be provided weekly online. For more information and to see the Pulse Index in action, go to
About Chase Paymentech:
Paymentech, LLC (“Chase Paymentech”), a subsidiary of JPMorgan Chase (JPMC), is a leading provider of payment processing and merchant acquiring. The company’s proprietary platforms enable integrated solutions for all payment types, including credit, debit, prepaid stored value and electronic check processing; as well as digital, alternative and mobile payment options. Chase Paymentech has uniquely combined proven payment technology with a long legacy of merchant advocacy that creates quantifiable value for companies large and small. In 2010, Chase Paymentech processed 20.5 billion transactions with a value of $469.3 billion, including an estimated half of all global Internet transactions. In addition to the ability to authorize transactions in more than 130 currencies, the company provides business analytics and information services, fraud detection and data security solutions. More information can be found

Discover Financial Services Announces Fourth Quarter 2011 Earnings Release and Conference Call

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RIVERWOODS, Ill.--()--Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) plans to report its fourth quarter 2011 results before the market opens on Thursday, Dec. 15, 2011. The earnings release will be available on Discover's corporate website
A conference call to discuss the firm's results, outlook and related matters will be held at 10:30 a.m. Eastern time. The general public is invited to listen to the call by dialing 800-447-0521 (U.S. domestic) or 847-413-3238 (international), passcode 31317459, or via a live audio webcast through the Investor Relations section of the website. For those unable to listen to the live broadcast, a replay will be available on the website or by dialing 888-843-7419 (U.S. domestic) or 630-652-3042 (international), passcode 31317459, beginning approximately two hours after the event. The replay of the conference call will be available through Jan. 15, 2012.
About Discover
Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) is a direct banking and payment services company with one of the most recognized brands in U.S. financial services. Since its inception in 1986, the company has become one of the largest card issuers in the United States. The company operates the Discover card, America's cash rewards pioneer, and offers personal and student loans, online savings accounts, certificates of deposit and money market accounts through its Discover Bank subsidiary. Its payment businesses consist of Discover Network, with millions of merchant and cash access locations; PULSE, one of the nation's leading ATM/debit networks; and Diners Club International, a global payments network with acceptance in more than 185 countries and territories. For more information, visit

Boardwalk Inc. Begins Near Field Communication (NFC) R&D

Aiming to Improve Entertainment Services in Japan and Overseas
TOKYO--()--Boardwalk Inc. (Head office: Shibuya, Tokyo; President and CEO: Akira Ichikawa) will begin Near Field Communication (NFC) research and development of ticket-related applications.
NFC is global standard for short distance wireless communication prescribed by International Organization for Standardization (ISO), which allows multi-faceted services compatible with the FeliCa, a contactless IC card technology widely used in Japan, and the Type A/B, prevailing technology in Europe and the U.S. By adopting this international NFC standard, it is possible to implement mobile payment services within global reach.
As a new ticket service for the entertainment business, Boardwalk provides "ticket board," a mobile ticketing service. "ticket board" utilizes the Osaifu-Keitai ("mobile wallet" using the FeliCa technology) feature that turns the mobile phone itself into paperless ticket, and QR code for users who don't have the Osaifu -Keitai-enabled phone. Following introduction of the service in Japan, Boardwalk believes that NFC compatibility is necessary for future core technology of ticket board in order to implement mobile ticketing service in overseas.
NFC implementation will improve usability of ticket board service overseas.
Moreover, with this research and development, Boardwalk will be able to receive the following specific support from its investor, NTT DOCOMO, INC.
1.Specification formulation support for ticketing compatible with NFC
2.Development support for NFC device applications
3.Development support for NFC server applications
4.Global PR/advertisement cooperation for the above
5.Global sales cooperation for the above
Introduction of partner companies for effective implementation of 1-5 above
With this, Boardwalk expects further accurate research and development of NFC technology.
Corporate Information
Company Name:
Boardwalk Inc.
1-4-2 Shibuya, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo, Japan
680 million yen
May 27, 2010
Main Shareholders:
Accounting Term:
Business Activities:
  • Ticket sales for events including: music, sports, movies, theater.
  • Planning/production/sales of digital content and merchandise.
  • Providing ticket sales service.
  • Planning/production/execution of various events.
  • Other activities relevant to the above.

The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover Financial Services

CHICAGODec. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include Visa Inc. (NYSE: V), MasterCard Inc.(NYSE: MA), American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP), Discover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) and Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT).
Get the most recent insight from Zacks Equity Research with the free Profit from the Pros newsletter:
Here are highlights from Thursday's Analyst Blog:
Debit Fee Rule Makes Visa Restless
Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) appears to have tried out every means to delay the implementation of the debit-fee ruling finalized in June this year, due to which the company's lobbying charges increased substantially during the third quarter of 2011.
However, Visa's close rival, MasterCard Inc. (NYSE: MA) is apparently more relaxed about regulatory issues having witnessed a significant decline in its third quarter lobbying charges. Other card players such as American Express Co. (NYSE: AXP) andDiscover Financial Services (NYSE: DFS) are yet to reveal their lobbying data.
Early this week, according to a disclosure report, Visa and MasterCard reportedly spent $1.69 million and $0.58 million, respectively, in the third quarter of 2011. While lobbying costs for Visa jumped 54% year over year and 17% sequentially, the same for MasterCard plummeted 31% from $0.84 million in the year-ago quarter and 25% from $0.77 million reported in the sequential quarter.
In the July-September period of 2011, Visa and MasterCard took the federal government into confidence regarding the regulation of consumer financial products, interchange fees, online payments, data security, and internet gambling among other issues. Overall, the companies lobbied the Congress, the White House and the Treasury Department.
While both the card giants lobbied the federal government on multiple issues, the most primary one was the recent reduction on interchange fees charged on debit card transactions.
The Dodd-Frank Act signed in July 2010 limited the interchange fees that card issuers charge merchants for using the card, which constitute a major component of card issuers' revenues. These issues have been unsettling the card giants, thereby compelling them to lobby against them.
Furthermore, after months of discussions, the Federal Reserve (Fed) capped the interchange fee at 21 cents per debit transaction in July this year, drastically down from the average of 44 cents. This reduction will hamper revenues of the banks, which in turn will affect the card companies as banks would now try to trim the fee they pay to use the respective card networks.
Moreover, despite several initiatives to delay or modify this fee-ceiling, the ruling has been implemented effective October 1, 2011, thereby indicating caution on these card giants. The debit-fee cap has particularly hit Visa very hard since most of its revenue is generated from the debit card business. The company processes the largest number of debit transactions in the US, well ahead of MasterCard.
Though the new rules will protect credit card users from unreasonable late payment fees, interest rate hikes and other penalty fees, they could even adversely affect the profitability of these major card issuers.
As a result of execution of the rule, Visa's growth is expected to slow down in fiscal 2012, which is also reflected from its top-line growth guidance in high single-digit to low double-digits range and bottom-line growth in the middle-to-high teens. However, MasterCard would not go unscathed, although its growth slump is not expected to be as severe as for its arch rival Visa.
Nevertheless, we believe that both card giants are fundamentally strong stocks and, are expected to deliver well with the market stability. Besides, the companies are also seeking greener pastures through newer initiatives, including the expansion into prepaid cards, mobile banking and eCommerce.

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