All items tagged with "NFC"

The iPhone just made room keys obsolete at Starwood hotels

Your iPhone is now a hotel key too: Photo: Starwood Hotels

Your iPhone is now a hotel key too: Photo: Starwood Hotels

The dream of replacing all the pieces of plastic in your wallet with your smartphone got a little closer to reality today as Starwood hotels announced that its new keyless entry system – SPG Keyless – is rolling out to hotels worldwide.

Guests at Aloft, Element, and W Hotels around the globe can now use their iPhone and the SPG app to skip the hotel front desk altogether, walk straight to their room, and unlock it, no key required.

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Apple wants to replace transit passes with iPhone 6’s NFC

A war for mobile wallet dominance is on the horizon. Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

A war for mobile wallet dominance is on the horizon. Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

iPhone 6 owners have only started using Apple Pay to buy items at local stores, but Apple is looking to expand the technology behind its mobile payments system to eventually replace everything from building security cards, subway passes, and bus tickets.

Apple representatives have reportedly been talking to potential partners about using the iPhone 6’s NFC for other uses, reports The Information, with the aim to replace all the tickets and passes you carry in your wallet too.

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Apple and Android fanboys unite to boycott NFC payment blocking

Photo: Killian Bell

Photo: Killian Bell

Just like one of The Avengers — where bickering superheroes team up to fight a far more oppressive evil — Apple and Android fans on reddit have united forces to boycott what they see as the unethical blocking of NFC payment systems by a number of different retailers, affecting users of both Apple Pay and Google Wallet.

The reason for this blocking of the NFC service is that the retailers in question — including Gap, Old Navy, 7-Eleven, Sears, Kmart and others — are part of an organization called Merchant Customer Exchange, which uses its own payment system called CurrentC.

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CVS and Rite Aid block Apple Pay as mobile wallet war heats up

A war for mobile wallet dominance is on the horizon. Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

A war for mobile wallet dominance is on the horizon. Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Two major pharmacy chains have stopped supporting Apple Pay as merchants in the U.S. take sides on which mobile wallet platform to embrace.

Reports from a couple days ago revealed that Rite Aid had started disabling its NFC terminals, thereby forbidding the use of Apple Pay and Google Wallet. Now CVS has reportedly started shutting down its NFC terminals.

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Why Apple Pay is the future

Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

About to test Apple Pay at the local Walgreens. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Critics are fond of saying Apple doesn’t innovate any more. But Apple’s new electronic payment system, Apple Pay, is innovation of the highest order. After a relatively smooth rollout this week, I honestly believe Apple Pay is the future of payments.

Even so, Apple Pay must clear some big hurdles if it’s to become the universal standard. For now, it’s limited to Apple’s latest iPhones and a relatively small number of retail partners, but the basic system — using your fingerprint to validate a purchase on your mobile phone — is the way we will pay for goods and services in the future.

Once again, Apple has shown the world how things should be done.

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How to find stores near you that support Apple Pay

Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple Pay. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

Apple Pay launched yesterday with dozens of official partners supporting Apple’s mobile payments solution out of the gate, but even though participating stores are listed on Apple’s website, there are tons of other contactless payment vendors in your city that can use Apply Pay, and you don’t even know it.

Many of the 200,000 contactless NFC payment terminals across the U.S. can accept Apple Pay, whether it’s a Coca-Cola vending machine, or your local car shop. Finding those business using contactless payments is the biggest challenge, but thanks to a couple of websites and apps, you can locate your next Apple Pay destination in seconds.

Here’s how to find Apple Pay merchants near you:

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In-app purchases will make up majority of early Apple Pay transactions

Photo: Apple

Photo: Apple

Today marks the official roll-out of Apple’s long-awaited mobile payments service, Apple Pay. But while paying for items in-store using your iPhone is definitely an exciting prospect, Cupertino expects in-app purchases will make up the vast majority of early transactions, according to The Wall Street Journal.

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Apple Pay might launch on October 20th with iOS 8.1

applepay

Apple’s first major iOS 8 seeded to developers this week contained clues that Apple Pay is nearly ready for launch, and according to a report from Bank Innovation, we won’t have to wait much longer to replace our wallets with the new mobile payments solution.

The finishing touches are still being made to the security features in Apple Pay, but the report claims that the official release is tentatively scheduled for the third monday of October.

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Square plans to add Apple Pay and Bitcoin support to next register

squareregisteripad

Apple Pay is threatening to put mobile payments companies like Square and PayPal out of business when it launches next month, but according to Square co-founder Jack Dorsey, Apple Pay isn’t actually a threat to his company.

Dorsey revealed yesterday that Square is hoping to use Apple Pay to its advantage by building a new register for sellers that accepts Apple Pay and pretty much every other form of payment you can slide across a counter.

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Apple’s partner used familiar code-name for top secret payments project

Photo: Apple

Photo: Apple

Apple’s insistence on secretive behavior is well known. When it came to entering mobile payments with Apple Pay, that veil of secrecy didn’t drop for a second — with Apple insisting on some pretty stringent security measures, despite dealing with some of the giants of finance.

The code-name it chose for one of its partners on the project might strike you as a bit familiar, however — since it was later re-used as the name for Apple’s latest iteration of OS X.

“Our first code-name was Yosemite,” Barry McCarthy, president of Financial Services at FirstData, told me in an interview. “Later on when we found out that was also the name Apple had selected for its new OS, we changed it to Project Acadia, after another U.S. national park. We weren’t allowed to use or even say the name of the technology company we were working with — which was of course Apple.”

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