Smart Bands

San Fernando, CA-based Precision Dynamics announced that two theme parks in Atlanta, Stone Mountain Park and Six Flags Over Georgia, have begun using its “Smart Band” RFID wristbands. The wristbands enable visitors to pay for merchandise and refreshments, as well as to gain access to parks, individual rides, and lockers, with a “flick of the wrist.” “Smart Band” incorporates radio frequency identification technology from Texas Instruments. Precision Dynamics has also implemented its “Smart Band” technology at Six Flags Over Georgia in a “Floating Locker System” developed by Compusafe Electronic Locker Systems of Wentworth Falls, Australia. Guests purchase their “Locker Band” for the day and the new RFID-based system lets them rent a locker on demand at any of the park’s lockers for just the time they need it. Each “Locker Band” is equipped with TI’s “Tag-it” smart label inlay, which individually identifies each patron and allows data to be written to and read from the bands to control access to the lockers. Precision Dynamics introduced the first patient bar code ID wristband in 1984 and RFID wristbands in 2000.

Details

Toshiba Card

Household Bank has inked a deal with the Computer Systems Group of Toshiba America Information Systems to provide Toshiba CSG with a private-label credit card program. The new private-label program will be offered exclusively through Toshiba CSG’s Shop Toshiba business unit, the company’s online and telesales operations. Customers will be able to apply for instant credit with no annual fee using the Toshiba card and if approved, make immediate purchases. Household will provide all key customer service functions, including reviewing applications, opening new accounts, authorizing transactions, making billing adjustments and responding to customer inquiries. Customers can apply for the new card directly online, or by calling telephone sales.

Details

MOSAIC & NCR

Mosaic Software has teamed with NCR Corporation to provide
software for advanced ATM and self-service solutions. The deal involves the
integration of NCR’s “APTRA Edge” self-service software and Mosaic’s
“eSocket.ATM.” “APTRA” is NCR’s software architecture for self-service,
developed on Windows NT. “APTRA” gives users the ability to run a single
application on a mixed vendor hardware base, and the freedom to apply
favourite tools and graphics to ATM programming. The “APTRA Edge”
development environment allows ATM owners to design and deliver new ATM
functions with speed, to develop targeted campaign marketing and to
Web-enable financial services. “eSocket.ATM” communicates transaction
information to a central “Postilion” system using a rich transaction
protocol with significantly more functionality than legacy protocols. This
allows support for technologies like EMV, 3DES, bunch note acceptance,
cheque deposit and advanced services like mobile prepaid top-up, ticket
purchase, cheque printing, cheque cashing, wire transfer, as well as the
traditional transactions like cash withdrawal and balance enquiry.

Details

NPC & Hypercom

National Processing Co. has signed a multi-year agreement with Hypercom to offer “ICE 5500Plus” and “T7Plus” card payment terminals and “HFT” quick service payment technology to its merchant customers. The feature-rich T7Plus sets a new performance benchmark for mid-range point-of-sale terminals. The ICE 5500Plus is a high performance, touch screen-based, Web-enabled card payment terminal that incorporates physical security features and Hypercom’s HyperSafe(TM) operating system.

Details

VeriFone & TNS

Transaction Network Services and VeriFone have joined to optimize terminal performance in a wide range of communications environments. The partnership ensures that processors and merchants that rely on VeriFone’s terminals and TNS’ networks to transport electronic payments receive the best possible transaction services, during this time of increasingly diverse demands on electronic payment technology including the use of Internet Protocol, ISDN and wireless payment connectivity. In the US, the TNS network transported approximately 6.7 billion POS and ATM transactions in 2001. VeriFone has shipped over 10 million payment terminals worldwide, with more than five million installed in the US.

Details

CUBIC E2 GATE

Rotterdam’s Electrische Tram has begun using a new gate to improve
passenger security. The “Cubic E2” gate is part of an integrated security
system, which includes closed-circuit television and guards.
The “E2 gates” can be opened by any valid ticket and are compatible with
new smart card-based ticketing systems. The “E2” gate is an updated and
enhanced version of Cubic’s “Passenger Gate,” which was originally designed
for London Transport. This gate incorporates safety recommendations of the
Health and Safety Commission, which investigated the Kings Cross Station
Fire in 1987. The gate went into service with London Underground in the
early 1990s and has set new standards in safety, reliability and general
performance. Today, nearly 2,000 are in daily use with London Underground
and a similar number on the U.K. National Railways. The new “E2” gates
preserve all the safety features of the original gate while incorporating
various enhancements such as small size, lower power consumption, higher
reliability, smart-card capability and lower cost. In addition to magnetic
tickets, the E2 gate accepts all ISO standard contactless smart cards and
the Cubic GO CARD.

Details

GameCreds VISA

CNET’s GameSpot unit is set to launch the first prepaid debit-card based rewards and rebates program for gamers. The new “GameCreds VISA” debit card will be powered by Clarity Payment Solutions. Clarity will provide GameSpot with a unique way to distribute the rewards into individual accounts using its advanced promotion code technology. “Clarity Promotion” Codes are alphanumeric codes that deliver a pre-determined reward amount upon redemption. “GameCreds” members simply enter their codes at the GameCreds Web site and rewards are instantly deposited into their account for immediate use.

Details

Micropayments & EBPP Study

Atlanta-based Collective Dynamics has released a consumer research study on micropayments and announced an initiative to develop a comprehensive consumer study of EBPP with CheckFree Corporation, US Bank, and VISA. One of the major findings in the study is that consumers want to use debit and credit cards in more and more places, especially places that have an average ticket under $20.

Details

Card Usage

A new study of 2,000 consumers has found that 36% of credit card owners are using their cards more frequently than last year driven by security concerns with handling cash, and by the need to use credit cards for making online or telephone purchases. The survey by New York-based RoperASW also found that today’s consumers are more financially savvy and no longer have 4-6 cards running at high balances at the same time. Rather, the focus today is on selectively using one or two major credit cards as “all-purpose” cards. The survey also revealed that most consumers are confident that they will be able to pay off their bills before large balances accrue. More than eight in ten Americans believe that credit cards are good for emergencies, up 7 points since 2000 and one in three say credit cards allow them to buy things they don’t have the money for right now.

Details

BIOMETRIC WELFARE CARDS

Parklands-based Net1 Applied Technology Holdings Limited has contracted
California-based SecuGen to provide fingerprint biometric technology to the
South African Department of Social Welfare’s smart card initiative. Aplitec
recently won a three-year contract from the South African Department of
Social Welfare to provide payment services using smart cards and
fingerprint biometric technology to an additional 400,000 people in the
Eastern Cape Province beginning in November. Approximately 300 Aplitec
vehicles equipped with a total of 2,000 fingerprint biometric readers
travel to 5,184 rural locations throughout South
Africa to dispense payments to over 1.8M qualified recipients each month.
Because these recipients are among the 80% of the South African population
who do not have bank accounts, payments are made in cash. To use the
biometric smart card system, recipients only need to present their
government-issued ID document once to authorize the enrollment of their
fingerprints into the Aplitec system. To receive payment, the recipients
present their smart card and provide identification by matching their
fingerprint against the encrypted template stored in the card.

Details

Biometric Welfare Cards

South Africa’s Net1 Applied Technology Holdings Limited has contracted California-based SecuGen to provide fingerprint biometric technology to the South African Department of Social Welfare’s smart card initiative. Aplitec recently won a three-year contract from the South African Department of Social Welfare to provide payment services using smart cards and fingerprint biometric technology to an additional 400,000 people in the Eastern Cape Province beginning in November. Approximately 300 Aplitec vehicles equipped with a total of 2,000 fingerprint biometric readers travel to 5,184 rural locations throughout South Africa to dispense payments to over 1.8 million qualified recipients each month. Because these recipients are among the 80% of the South African population who do not have bank accounts, payments are made in cash. To use the biometric smart card system, recipients only need to present their government-issued ID document once to authorize the enrollment of their fingerprints into the Aplitec system.

Details