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Google Ready To Rule NFC-Based Mobile Payments?

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the one-payment-method-to-rule-them-all dept.

Google 87

itwbennett writes "Google may seem like an odd pioneer for mobile payments, says blogger Ryan Faas, but according to recent reports, the company is developing its own NFC payment solution. Here's why Faas thinks Google has a leg up in this emerging market: 'Google does have a lot of clout when it comes to NFC because the recent launch of the Nexus S and Gingerbread (the most recent Android release) offer the first truly widespread smartphone/NFC integration. That could give Google significant bargaining power. It also makes a certain sense to expect Google to try to lead in this area when you consider that the company is hyping mobile search and recommendation features.'"

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NFC (5, Informative)

FauxPasIII (75900) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771058)

For those wondering: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near_field_communication [wikipedia.org]

Re:NFC (1)

Tripp-phpBB (1912354) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771148)

Would have been very useful to link to this in the article or explain it. Mod up for reference

Re:NFC (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771256)

Being first does not mean you'll automatically win. It's a bit presumptuous to assume Google has a "leg up" just because they released the first NFC-capable device. Remember: Sony was first with the VCR and look where they ended-up (lost to JVC with its better-designed and cheaper VHS).

Re:NFC (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771424)

Being first means you get a premium on sales without competition, and can reinvest the extra money to continuously improve your product to stay ahead as competition starts to appear, and always have better margins.

I.e., unless you fuck it up by assuming you're done when you first deploy it, you win.

Re:NFC (1)

ezzzD55J (697465) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771564)

Nonsense. There is such a thing as 'first mover advantage,' but it doesn't mean you'll win if you don't fuck it up. There are countless counterexamples. Who uses a Xerox photocopier, a Hoover vacuum cleaner, the Altavista search engine, etc.?

Re:NFC (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772076)

All direct examples of "fucking it up."

All of those companies rested on their first-in status and failed to keep ahead using the first-to-market money.

They assumed the attitude of leader instead of actually leading. They tried to benefit academically instead of productively, and tried to project an image of quality in markets where performance was more important. They fell behind on innovation and left market holes through which their competitors drove entire product lines. They fell behind on unit margin and couldn't continue to operate and couldn't afford to change. Then they fell out.

Who uses a Microsoft operating system on their Intel x86 PC?

The moral: if you're in the game first, eat all the powerups before anyone else can get them.

Re:NFC (1)

ezzzD55J (697465) | more than 3 years ago | (#34774916)

Ok, I admit Xerox and Hoover aren't dead, but they're not the top dogs in their field by a long shot, so in that sense they haven't "won."

I guess this discussion is doomed to fail given how vague fucking something up is.. Somethings tells me you'd like to see it mean 'not winning,' in which case your original point is unassailable ;-)

Re:NFC (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34780544)

I said they fucked up, so they didn't win. Fucking up is how you don't win. Fucking up is failing to use your profit-margin advantage to reinvest to maintain your profit margins. Being first-to-market gives you that advantage over everyone who follows you. By not using that advantage, you are fucking up.

It couldn't have been more clear, but I made it more clear anyway.

Re:NFC (1)

rhook (943951) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772544)

Many people use Xerox brand machines and Hoover vacuum cleaners.

Re:NFC (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773260)

We use Xerox MFP's, we have dozens of them and some see upwards of a half million pages a year. From what I could find on the web they had a 28% marketshare at the end of 2005 in the MFP space (which is where most commercial copiers are since a fixed function copier makes almost zero sense for most businesses). More recent 2008-2H2010 numbers show similar numbers based on units shipped.

Re:NFC (1)

mbstone (457308) | more than 3 years ago | (#34774696)

Yeah, but they don't have 'em at Staples or Office Depot anymore.

Re:NFC (1)

davester666 (731373) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773926)

You missed "Windows Tablet".

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34774060)

I thought the Newton was by Apple (and an iHhancement of the Psion, to boot)

Re:NFC (2)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771914)

Being first means you get a premium on sales without competition, and can reinvest the extra money to continuously improve your product to stay ahead as competition starts to appear, and always have better margins.

Who created the first personal computer again? The first television? The first radio?

Often the company that becomes rich off an invention isn't the one that first creates it but the one that waits for the technology to mature and spread a bit. It's very easy for the pioneers to become associated with the inconveniences and incompatibilities of an emerging technology, while relative latecomers simply by virtue of their delay become associated with a much smoother experience.

Re:NFC (3, Insightful)

spun (1352) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771544)

Most folks who have analyzed the videotape format war agree Betamax was technically superior, at least at first. Technical superiority played no part in the ultimate victory of VHS over Betamax. It was a great example of the network effect. In essence, VHS was popular because simply it was popular, like certain celebrities who are famous only for being famous.

Re:NFC (3, Informative)

Mike Van Pelt (32582) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771834)

VHS became more popular than Betamax because an entire movie would fit on a single VHS tape. For most consumers, that factor far outweighed the somewhat better picture, and arguable "technical superiority". Much later, Sony produced Betamax decks that could record more than one (1) hour of programming, but by then, VHS had too much of a lead.

Re:NFC (1, Informative)

Xtifr (1323) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772208)

Most folks who have analyzed the videotape format war agree Betamax was technically superior, at least at first.

That's basically true, as far as picture quality went.

Technical superiority played no part in the ultimate victory of VHS over Betamax.

That's not so true. VHS wasn't limited to 1 hour like Beta was at first, and that one detail of technical superiority may have played a part, although opinions are divided whether it was a major factor.

In essence, VHS was popular because simply it was popular

That's definitely not true. VHS was cheaper, and wasn't subject to the whims and restrictions of a single company. There were rumors--quite false, but they may have had an impact on the market--that Sony wouldn't license Beta technology for porn. For many people, though, VHS was simply good enough, given the differences in price, and those who insisted on paying extra for Beta were often perceived as pretentious and yuppie, somewhat like hardcore audiophiles are often perceived today.

Price and play time are usually considered to be the two main factors in VHS's ultimate triumph. The network effect was no doubt a contributing factor in the long run, but only after other factors had given VHS a solid lead. For that matter, grandparent poster is incorrect when he says Beta was first. Actually, Beta was second, and VHS was third. But when we're talking about implementing an open standard, as NFC seems to be, the whole analogy of the (incompatible) video tape format wars seems to fail big time. This seems to me more analogous to the competition among early VHS manufacturers, all working to the same standard. And here, early mover is more likely to be a factor, I suspect, but price is also going to be a big factor. Overall, though, I think the market is more likely to remain competitive, with multiple companies offering a variety of products.

Re:NFC (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34777238)

>>>Most folks who have analyzed the videotape format war agree Betamax was technically superior, at least at first

How so? Betamax and VHS have identical specs (240-250 analog lines of horizontal resolution) (50-10,000 hertz sound - later 20-20,000 with Beta and VHS HiFi). In fact in many ways Betamax was inferior because it only held an hour a tape where VHS was immediately released with 2 and 4 hour modes. Consumers want more time and VHS offered approximately double what Betamax could do.

Re:NFC (1)

spun (1352) | more than 3 years ago | (#34778270)

You are confusing early and late model Beta and VHS. In the first release, Beta was clearly superior, with 250 lines vs 240 lines horizontal, lower video noise, and less luma/chroma crosstalk than VHS. But it only had an hour playback time at that quality. Extending playback time to two hours (plenty for a movie) gave it, well, okay, an equivalent quality. So it wasn't really quality or playback time, as they were roughly equivalent by the eighties when people really started buying videotape players.

Re:NFC (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34779462)

>>>Beta was clearly superior, with 250 lines vs 240 lines horizontal, lower video noise, and less luma/chroma crosstalk than VHS.

Yeah but can anybody SEE that difference? No not really. Besides JVC quickly added "HQ" to their VHS units to bring them up to 250 lines, with NR, and better filtering of the chroma.

And of course VHS still had the two times longer recording ability throughout its lifespan, so it was superior than Betamax, if only in that one aspect. 5.5 was the longest Betamax did, while VHS did 10.5 hours.

Re:NFC (1)

spun (1352) | more than 3 years ago | (#34779910)

I would posit that anything over 2 hours per tape is plenty and consumers would not factor that into purchasing decisions. The picture quality was not a big factor either. I'm saying, this is an example of the network effect randomly selecting one of two very similar products. This is not an example of the free market selecting the superior product and punishing the inferior product. Which products succeed and fail in the market has more to do with factors such as marketing, branding, and the network effect than it does with quality. It is much cheaper to get a critical mass of stupid people to believe your product is better and sell it for you through word of mouth than it is to actually make your product better.

But you had to know I'd find some way to diss the free market here.

Re:NFC (1)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34781702)

>>>I would posit that anything over 2 hours per tape is plenty and consumers would not factor that into purchasing decisions.

Not if you want to tape a football game which often goes 4 hours. Betamax only did 1 hour initially... and 3 on the slowest setting. Still not enough to tape the game or an evening of primetime (7-11), and therefore consumers would pick VHS (which did 4 hours from day one).

Re:NFC (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772422)

ony was first with the VCR and look where they ended-up (lost to JVC with its better-designed and cheaper VHS).

Sony had brand name recognition, and a leg up on getting a product out the door... JVC could have licensed Beta and released Beta players, except that Sony's terms were so ridiculous that JVC figured it would be more profitable to invent their own standard rather than work with Sony.

Sony lost the format wars by enabling them to happen in the first place. Had they licensed the technology more reasonably, and created a working group to manage the standard instead of dictating everything to everyone else, JVC wouldn't have gone their own way in the first place.

Re:NFC (1)

Ecyrd (51952) | more than 3 years ago | (#34775174)

Nokia and Samsung have had NFC-compatible models years ago. They're in active use in countries like Austria and Germany. Also, Japan has had its own NFC-based infra in place for years, and most cell phone manufacturers offer payment-capable phones in there. Have done so for the past few years.

Google is hardly the first.

Re:NFC (1)

rrey (1886420) | more than 3 years ago | (#34778262)

Google is not the first... They are just the first to communicate on it. Nokia and Samsung have their own devices ready for at least a year.

Re:NFC (1)

MarkGriz (520778) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771472)

And by calling it NFC instead of RFID, all of its security issues magically disappear

Re:NFC (4, Interesting)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771522)

NFC isn't RFID. It's RFID plus a simple extension to allow it to both read and be read. Which isn't RFID, it's several steps more scary that RFID.

You're point about the name change is apt though.

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772460)

Yes, with it they can make your phone/ipod go "Hey there.. check out the advert over there. We've added the number and address to your contacts, facebook likes and added them to your track me list unless you say otherwise in the next 5..4..3..2..1.. seconds..."

Re:NFC (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772508)

You're forgetting the hidden feature requiring NFC devices to secretly record checkpoint data for the past month.

Re:NFC (5, Informative)

swillden (191260) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773500)

NFC isn't RFID. It's RFID plus a simple extension to allow it to both read and be read..

It's not just RFID. NFC is two completely different RF technologies packaged together. One is contactless smart card technology (ISO 14443), at the frequency 13.56 Mhz, which enables very close-range (centimeters) relatively high-bandwidth (up to 800 kbps) bi-directional communication and is the technology used by the better contactless credit card payment systems, using cryptographic security. The other is what's normally called RFID, I forget which ISO standard, but it's at 900 Mhz and functions at much longer ranges (up to a meter or two) but only enables very simple communication. RFID tags are typically very "stupid" -- no microprocessor and many of them can't do anything other than respond with a number fixed at manufacture time when energized by a reader. Others allow the short numeric code they contain to be changed.

NFC actually enables the phone to operate as either reader or card/tag with both of these RF technologies.

This means that your phone can, in theory, act as a contactless smart card payment terminal, allowing you to accept credit card payments from an ordinary contactless credit card, or from another phone acting as a card. And, obviously, your phone can act as a contactless credit card -- but one with much better security because the phone has the ability to authenticate the user where the card doesn't, necessarily. Well, better security unless your phone gets rooted...

Oh, and of course, you'll be able to put multiple credit card accounts on your phone, so you can eliminate your cards from your wallet.

An NFC phone can also act as RFID reader, meaning that as retailers shift from putting barcodes on packages to cheap RFID tags, you'll be able to scan merchandise with your phone (you can do this now with phone cameras and UPC codes, but it's much less fiddly with RFID). Other use cases that get bandied about are things like embedding RFID tags in movie posters so you can scan the poster and get taken to a web site with more information (really, this is a use case that is OFTEN discussed in the industry as a sample application, as lame as it is). Finally, an NFC phone can act as an RFID tag. A commonly-suggested application for that is simple loyalty cards, like the Subway card that gets you a free sandwich after so many purchases. So you can get rid of those from your wallet also.

All of these features will, of course, be controllable by the phone's software, so they can be completely disabled when they should not be used, which is very nice for security and privacy. Again, assuming your phone remains under your control.

Re:NFC (1)

mbstone (457308) | more than 3 years ago | (#34774706)

So if I scan a T-shirt at the store, it will flash up on my smartphone, "We don't have XXL, but our XL shirts are pre-shrunk, so they'll fit even if you wear XXL"?

Re:NFC (1)

Ecyrd (51952) | more than 3 years ago | (#34775176)

Why not? There's plenty of ideas for startups out there around NFC.

Re:NFC (2)

DissociativeBehavior (1397503) | more than 3 years ago | (#34774856)

And, obviously, your phone can act as a contactless credit card -- but one with much better security because the phone has the ability to authenticate the user where the card doesn't, necessarily.

I don't think so. A smartcard is much more secure than a phone. In fact, I've worked on an NFC project where the phone was just a relay between the user and the SIM card. All the cryptographic operations were done on the card. The phone was just used as a user interface to enter the PIN code.

Re:NFC (1)

swillden (191260) | more than 3 years ago | (#34776022)

And, obviously, your phone can act as a contactless credit card -- but one with much better security because the phone has the ability to authenticate the user where the card doesn't, necessarily.

I don't think so. A smartcard is much more secure than a phone. In fact, I've worked on an NFC project where the phone was just a relay between the user and the SIM card. All the cryptographic operations were done on the card. The phone was just used as a user interface to enter the PIN code.

An NFC chip is a smart card (which may or may not be the same smart card chip as the SIM). Yes, the phone is "just" a user interface to enter the PIN code, but contrast that with a typical contactless smart card which, if a PIN is used at all, is only entered via a payment terminal which isn't under your control and may have been hacked or may even be bogus. Moving the PIN authentication to a device that's under your control is a big win for security (assuming it's actually under your control -- I'm really worried that handset and OS manufacturers aren't paying enough attention to security).

The recently-published EMV Chip & PIN hack is completely irrelevant if the attacker can't insert something between your keypad and the smart card chip, for example. Also, with a phone as the authentication device, there's no technological reason why we have to stick with four-digit PINs. It's perfectly feasible to put a fingerprint scanner in the phone, for example, or to use a longer password, or to apply cadence analysis as an additional metric. Or you could use the phone's camera, aimed at yourself, to use facial recognition for authentication. Or any combination of the above. The specific tradeoffs of convenience vs security can be customized by the user.

When you embed the payment chip in a phone, you add to it a screen, a keypad, a camera, a microphone and a network connection, plus the possibility to add additional I/O devices. Applied with some intelligence and a focus on security, that can be used to create a payment mechanism that is vastly more secure than an ISO 7816-1 plastic card.

Re:NFC (1)

heatpump (1958332) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773960)

No. Google is alway trying to make anything free of charge and then think about some other way to charge.

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34771672)

Right, so we just have to hope it's not as lame as infrared?

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772172)

Thank you. I was about to ask what the ballbutter NFC was. The article never says.

Re:NFC (1)

SpaFF (18764) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772174)

So 10 years ago everyone was talking about how the phones of tomorrow would have this neat technology called "bluetooth" that would let us use our phones like an ATM card. Obviously that never happened. So what does NFC give us that bluetooth didn't that will actually allow mobile payments to work?

Re:NFC (1)

secretagentmoof (1101717) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772382)

As usual, Japan actually went ahead and adopted NFC, albeit with a couple of competing standards. There's Suica [wikipedia.org] , ICOCA [wikipedia.org] , Edy [wikipedia.org] , Nanaco [wikipedia.org] , etc - and you can use them all from your mobile phone, merely by downloading the appropriate app.

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772340)

Dang. I was hoping for this NFC [wikipedia.org] on a phone. It's bad enough having unfamiliar TLAs [wikipedia.org] . It's worse when there are plenty of homonyms [wikipedia.org] for them.

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34774094)

Oh, I thought 'twas 'Nother Fucking 'Cronym.

Re:NFC (1)

KlomDark (6370) | more than 3 years ago | (#34776146)

Ha! I laughed! :)

Re:NFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34774226)

A more accurate expansion of the acronym: Network For Chumps (referring to the intended users), or Network For Crooks (referring to those who profit from it)

Re:NFC (1)

AnthonyGadgetX (1792094) | more than 3 years ago | (#34774280)

http://bit.ly/hxZ9GI [bit.ly] Thought it would be interesting to use NFC in an electromechanical smart door lock.

NFC = Near Field Communication (1)

Metrathon (311607) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771068)

Maybe I'm the only one who didn't know instantly, but that's what it is.

NFC = Not F*ing Clear (5, Funny)

Troll-Under-D'Bridge (1782952) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771160)

Okay for those "initially" confused like me. Here's a link to what I believe NFC stands for [wikipedia.org] . The Wikipedia redirect page for NFC [wikipedia.org] lists 11 possible expansions, including at least two other computer related terms and one possibly related to Finance (F), something called the National Finance Center.

Not good (4, Funny)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771190)

I heard that Google and Microsoft agreed to carve up the territory by division, and MS will get control of AFC payments. This is looking like it's going to be just another duopoly like cable vs. DSL providers.

Re:Not good (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771540)

Yawn, let me know when they're carving up the Bud Bowl.

Re:Not good (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771556)

AFC payments

What's that?

Re:Not good (2)

whoop (194) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772238)

An American football thing.

Re:Not good (1)

aiht (1017790) | more than 3 years ago | (#34819460)

Ahh, so this was a joke?
For those who know nothing of US football like me:
NFC = National Football Conference and AFC = American Football Conference
For some reason the American NFL (National Football League) is composed of these two Conferences.

Hmmm (1)

Sobieski (1032500) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771192)

This story was actually posted in the exact same minute that I held my Google Nexus S against my NFC-bus pass to see if it would register.

Coincidence? I think so!

NFC and Google = Business (-1, Offtopic)

homebusinessideas (1957730) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771228)

Google is getting their hands on everything. This is hilarious! I was on http://www.home-based-business-ideas.org/ [home-based...-ideas.org] earlier, doing some home business research, when I first read this article in syndication. If you did your homework, you'd be amazed at the number of things that they are involved in.

Re:NFC and Google = Business (-1, Offtopic)

homebusinessideas (1957730) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771270)

Not to mention the fact that the NFC may not even be around next year. They'll all be on their computers, filing for unemployment and learning how to work at home in their home business. lol http://ozzee.com/ [ozzee.com]

Re:NFC and Google = Business (3, Informative)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771278)

EDITORS: Please bitchslap the spammer.

Thanks.

Old stuff... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34771240)

First tried in Hong Kong, where it worked. See Octopus card. Never worked in London, where some 10m people have had this technology for 8 years. I think this is really a function of culture than anything else.

Re:Old stuff... (1)

Ingo314159 (1971278) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771390)

Quite true. I worked and lived in Hong Kong for some two years, and I was surprised to be able to "touch and pay" for a lot of things at a lot of places. And without giving my identity, but just using a top up card. However, for some reason this method is not very popular in other cultures. Barclays have been trying hard to push their NFC credit cards in the UK for the last couple of years, as have TFL (Transport for London). Even in the ah-so-modern New York, although the option to pay contactless exists more than just far and in between, you rarely see people use it. So, yes: Cultural thing. Nothing new, and doubtful that even Google will change tastes on such a scale, where others have clearly failed. Still interesting to watch this space.

They need devices out first (1)

Nushio (951488) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771244)

Google's NFC thing only works on Gingerbread phones that have the NFC chip. How many of the thousands of tablets and phones announced on CES have it?

Re:They need devices out first (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34771376)

Google's NFC thing only works on Gingerbread phones that have the NFC chip. How many of the thousands of tablets and phones announced on CES have it?

Don't worry, none of that will matter; once Apple "invents" it in their next generation of iThingamajigs, they'll tell everyone they have to use it and remind us how beautiful and glorious Apple is because they invented it first.

Not the first... (1)

DeathSquid (937219) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771292)

NFC and cell phone integration has been widespread in the Japanese market for several years. It is supported by all major carriers and has significant market penetration in that market. More importantly, it works with an existing large ecosystem of contactless payments and identity applications. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Osaifu-Keitai [wikipedia.org] .

While I applaud Google's pushing NFC adoption via Android, the biggest barrier to adoption will be interoperability with existing payment infrastructure such as Suica http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Suica [wikipedia.org] . In other words, what the average person wants is use their phone to pay for a train ticket or a bowl of noodles. If that doesn't work, then the technology is uninteresting to them.

Re:Not the first... (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771374)

The NFC stuff in the Nexus S is supposed to be compatible with stuff like Mastercard's PayPass; it may be a while before the banks add support/apps for this. They already have those at every McDonald's in Florida.

Re:Not the first... (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771552)

So, shall I add it to the list of reasons not to upgrade my Nexus One to the Nexus S? Seems to me that all this wireless payment stuff isn't entirely baked.

No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771396)

...are looking forward eagerly to this.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771458)

Why? Is NFC always-on, like passive RFID is? Or is it enabled when you tap a button while holding it up to the terminal device?

The blackhats can grab at my ass all day, but they won't get my digits unless they try to put their sniffer on top of my hand at the checkout.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

John Hasler (414242) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771840)

Try to imagine some of the things they will be able to do once they get some malware running on your phone.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

blair1q (305137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772020)

What? They can activate the button for me when I put the phone up to the pay terminal? Saves me a step, as far as I can see.

Other than that, there's nothing new they can do that they can't already. All they need is a keylogger to snag a credit-card number when I'm buying something online.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

badkarmadayaccount (1346167) | more than 3 years ago | (#34814138)

http://qubes-os.org/Home.html [qubes-os.org] - possible android version? Use a MiniOS kernel (xen team homebrew) - just for auth, hardware lock access to the smartcard to just that domain - and your golden.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

1 a bee (817783) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772450)

Or is it enabled when you tap a button while holding it up to the terminal device?

Sure, it's better if you have to tap that button. But you still give up a lot of privacy through this payment method. Every time you pay this way you advertise your identity, your location, and the time of your purchase.

This personal information leakage is a lot different than that the type that can be gleaned from say ordinary credit card transactions. It'll no doubt be captured in a way that makes connecting the dots easier, faster and more real time.

I'd use this technology if it implemented something like digital cash. Until, then, I'll be holding up checkout stand traffic--like the guy in that commercial..

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772806)

What part of paying with a credit card in a store doesn't reveal your identity, location, and time of purchase?

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (2)

1 a bee (817783) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773946)

What part of paying with a credit card in a store doesn't reveal your identity, location, and time of purchase?

No part of it. Apologies for being vague. I was trying to say that though in both transaction types, credit card and NFC, your personal information is revealed, in the case of Google's NFC implementation, this personal information will likely be fed into a live, real time "adworks" infrastructure that cross-correlates this information with information unrelated to the transaction (GPS location, connecting other dots). I don't imagine the credit card companies are anywhere close to such an infrastructure: their business models are not anchored around selling your personal information, so they have less incentive to build such a personal information capturing pipeline.

The scary thing about this, I think, is that companies like Google and Facebook will only get better at capturing, slicing and dicing this personal information as time goes on: their business models depend on it. And as the tools of their trade become ever more powerful, they will end up in wrong hands. But I digress..

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

badkarmadayaccount (1346167) | more than 3 years ago | (#34814164)

One Cyanogen mod reflash later... Thanks for all the fish, Google!

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772848)

Felica (the Sony system that's the 900 pound gorilla in contactless smartcards in asia and which the android API absolutely needs to be compatible with or be a total failure) is powered on via induction when within 10cm of the reader, I believe the ISO stuff is similar.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

Pikoro (844299) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773834)

My au IS03 android 2.1 phone here in Japan already supports this. They just call it Saifu Keitai (wallet phone). It supports Felica, Edy, and several others here just as most every other phone in the country has supported for the last 5+ years. Nothing new here.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

rrey (1886420) | more than 3 years ago | (#34778420)

You forgot that Japan is 5+ years in advance with the rest of the world in mobile technologies...

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34773110)

In the Nexus S, it defaults to off. You can turn it on, use it, and turn it back off. It gets grumpy if you do it too often in a short time period (five or six times in a minute), but not too big a deal (worst case, power cycle the phone... It takes less than 20 seconds off to back on and ready).

No doubt Google... (1)

c0lo (1497653) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771654)

...are looking forward eagerly to this.

No doubt, Google is marching eargely for this. Payment + GeoPositioning info in real time?

Throw in some incentives for the NFC terminal operators to allow the terminals communicating (through the very NFC phone) the content of the docklet and have a real-time trove of info on the populace purchases.

Re:No doubt the "black hats"... (1)

1 a bee (817783) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772304)

...are looking forward eagerly to this.

More like ...looking enviously at Google.

No Fat Chicks? (2)

jeffrey.endres (1630883) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771684)

No Fat Chicks payments? I'm all for fit and healthy women, but sounds a little discriminatory.

NFC-based? (2)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | more than 3 years ago | (#34771828)

Does this mean that even if one team really sucks, they'll still get a shot at the play-offs?

Re:NFC-based? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772006)

Does this mean that even if one team really sucks, they'll still get a shot at the play-offs?

Worked for the Seahawks.

NFC used by millions every day in Japan already (1)

Alimony Pakhdan (1855364) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772044)

NFC is old hat in civilized Asia. Here in Tokyo we've been using NFC for mass transit stored value cards, for payment at vending machines & POS systems for years. All the major mobile phone carriers offer NFC enabled phones and Softbank will soon release an add on NFC sticker for iPhones. Sony's FeliCa (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FeliCa) technology is the defacto standard here.

Odd pioneer? (1)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 3 years ago | (#34772254)

Why would Google seem like an odd pioneer for mobile payments? They run a payment gateway and they maintain one of the biggest mobile operating systems. If anything, they are the most obvious company in the world to do this.

KFC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34772274)

I read this as Google ready to rule KFC based mobile payments.

National Football Conference (1)

mestar (121800) | more than 3 years ago | (#34773222)

National Football Conference payments??? Why would they do that?

No fucking clue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34779994)

I have no fucking clue what NFC might be.

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