Posts tagged Trial
Google is reportedly planning to test a mobile payment system based on NFC (near field communication) technology in shops in New York and San Francisco within the next four months.
People familiar with Google’s plans have told Bloomberg that Google will be installing thousands of NFC enabled cash register systems at partner locations. The new technology would work like the Oyster card system used on London Transport, except cutomers would place a mobile device on the reader instead.
The special cash registers have been built by VeriFone Systems and have been designed to accept mobile payments from mobile phones that are equipped with NFC chips. Google is hoping to a get a head start in the mobile payment market by bringing its own payment services to the market before any one else.
Google’s service will compete with an upcoming mobile payment system being developed in a partnership between Ebay’s PayPal and ISIS. The system is backed by wireless carriers AT&T and Verizon Wireless with the payments being handled by Discover Financial Services. The service will be trialled this year.
Google’s NFC service, or any other mobile payments service for that matter, will be counting on mobile phone and smartphone makers to include NFC technology on their devices.
Samsung’s new Nexus S smartphone is one of the few devices that comes with this technology but Nokia and Research in Motion have both confirmed that they will launching NFC enabled devices soon.
BEIJING - A system designed to track the location of millions of mobile phone users is to be tested in Beijing, sparking concerns over privacy, state media reported Thursday.
The information platform will enable authorities to check on the location of China Mobile’s more than 17 million users in the capital, the Global Times newspaper said, citing the Beijing Municipal Science and Technology Commission.
The commission made the announcement in a statement posted on its website on Monday but it was later removed, the newspaper said.
A spokeswoman for China Mobile, the world’s largest mobile phone operator, said she could not immediately respond to questions from AFP and no one at the commission was available to comment.
The official Beijing Daily newspaper said Wednesday the project would “round up” information on mobile users’ movements around the city including their time of departure, destination and means of transport.
The data will be used to better control traffic and monitor the population, the Global Times said, citing an unidentified employee at the commission.
“Our focus is to get general statistics for better traffic management and population monitoring,” the employee said.
“For example, if you want to determine the number of migrants in Beijing, the platform is far more precise than a door-to-door census.”
The system will be tested in two densely populated areas in the city’s north by the end of June, the Global Times said.
The announcement has raised concerns that the system will infringe the privacy of mobile users, despite pledges by officials that they would make sure personal data was not leaked, the Global Times said.
The newspaper said 23 people, some of whom had been employed to handle China Mobile’s customer service issues, were currently on trial in Beijing for selling personal information, such as users’ location, on the Internet.
Mobile payments are starting to come to U.S. carriers in various forms after years of expectations, with AT&T announcing a trial with back-end service provider Boku a day after Sprint Nextel announced its Sprint Mobile Wallet.
The AT&T trial initially will involve using a mobile phone in conjunction with checkout pages on the PC-based Web. At online merchants that work with Boku, AT&T subscribers will be able to choose Boku instead of a credit card or other option to pay for digital content or virtual goods, said Boku spokesman David Speiser. After clicking on the Boku option, they will enter their mobile-phone number and then receive a text message to confirm the purchase. By answering the text message with “y,” the subscriber will approve the payment. The charge will appear on the subscriber’s phone bill.
Boku’s stable of merchant partners includes major game vendors such as Electronic Arts, Playdom and FarmVille creator Zynga. AT&T will be the first U.S. operator to offer this payment option to its subscribers, though other carriers already offer older payment systems such as premium SMS through Boku, Speiser said.
Boku is also working on bringing payments to mobile applications. In June the company announced an SDK (software development kit) for adding a Boku payment option, called Paymo, to Android apps. An iPhone option is also in the works, Speiser said. With an entirely phone-based system, subscribers don’t have to enter their phone numbers. It could be used to buy virtual goods or content within gaming and other apps, with the charge appearing on the next phone bill.
The AT&T trial will begin with just a subset of Boku’s merchant partners, but within a few weeks all the participating companies will be brought in, Speiser said. Carriers outside the U.S., including Vodafone and Philippines operator Globe, already have commercially available payment systems operated by Boku.
Sprint’s Mobile Wallet, coming next month, will be an application for making payments either in a store or online. Subscribers will be able to link the wallet to a variety of payment systems, including Visa, MasterCard, American Express and PayPal, and use a single PIN to authorize payment with any one of them. The initial group of merchants working with the Sprint Mobile Wallet includes game vendors Namco and Gameloft, and in-flight retailer SkyMall. Verizon and T-Mobile also are testing mobile payment systems, which could benefit carriers by giving them a role in new types of transactions.