Fitbit's shutting down Coin: Connected card Coin, which is designed to store other card accounts, is shutting down as of Feb. 28. The universal credit cards will still work until their batteries run out, but the mobile app will no longer operate. Engadget reports Fitbit, which acquired Coin in 2016 as well as smartwatch maker Pebble, is more focused on payment-capable wearable technology. Coin dates to 2013, and has suffered from some logistic issues that delayed its launch. The company later added contactless payments technology to its cards in an effort to stay current with payment technology.
Qvivr's Swyp has a new launch target: Another connected card with production issues, Qvivr's Swyp, has a new $5 million round of funding and plans to launch by the end of the year. VentureBeat reports Khosla Ventures led the round, along with an unidentified Asian bank. In development for more than two years, Swyp stores more than two dozen credit, debit or loyalty cards. "Tens of thousands" of people have pre-ordered the card, Qvivr founder Ashutosh Dhodapkar told VentureBeat. The card was originally scheduled to release in 2016, but got delayed because the manufacturer could not scale production and maintain quality, Dhodapkar told the website, adding the company is working on an additional product for millennials.
On Track in Japan: Israeli mobile technology company On Track Innovations has received the first order of FeliCa-certified contactless payment systems in Japan, slated for deployment at a retailer the company did not identify. It will install 10,000 of the systems over the next three years. FeliCa is the main wireless protocol in Japan, and is considered vital to support contactless payments. OTI’s certification and deployment puts it in position to enable local payment types, as well as Apple Pay, which supports FeliCa for the mobile wallet in Japan. “This is a significant purchase order for OTI,” said Shlomi Cohen, OTI’s CEO, in a release. Japan has an estimated 6 million vending machines, which represents a major opportunity for growth for OTI in the Asia-Pacific market.
Finger pay: London music venue and bar Proud Camden is one of the U.K.'s first adopters of finger vein biometrics for authenticating payments. Finextra reports the bar is using technology from Sthaler called FingoPay, which builds a 3D map of the consumer’s veins, creating a "key" that eliminates the need for the user to enter any data when making a payment. Proud Camden's not alone among London bars that are embracing digital transactions. Henry's Cafe Bar has deployed Pay@Pump, a Barclaycard system that allows people to order drinks on a screen, then pay with a contactless card or NFC device.
From the Web (powered by Wiser)
Braintree hires former Lending Club exec John MacIlwaine as CTO
Venture Beat • Ken Yeung
Braintree has hired a new chief technology officer in a move designed to ease the workload of Juan Benitez, who split his time between that position and general manager of the company.
Netcetera acquires mobile wallet provider Nexperts
Mobile World Live • Chris Donkin
Swiss financial software company Netcetera acquired Austrian mobile wallet provider Nexperts for an undisclosed sum.
Venmo's monetization will be worth watching
Business Insider • B.I. Intelligence
Venmo, the PayPal-owned peer-to-peer (P2P) payments app, became a considerably more meaningful contributor to PayPal’s overall business in 2016.
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