Payments service provider Yapital has integrated Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) wireless technology into its portfolio, enabling a range of new proximity payments and location-based services.

Luxembourg-based Yapital is adding BLE to its POSCard product, which was developed in partnership with technology company POSPartner. The card is designed to enable a wireless connection between the smartphone and point of sale terminal in areas with or without mobile network coverage, such as shops located underground.

Yapital and POSPartner were attracted to the technology because of its longer range than Near Field Communication (NFC), a technology used in many mobile wallets for contactless payments.

"In conjunction with Yapital, we are giving retailers the opportunity to offer their customers an improved shopping experience even  without network coverage and at the same time reduce waiting times at the checkout," says Peter Reich, CEO of POSPartner, in a Feb. 13 press release.

Many newer mobile payment and marketing initiatives use BLE technology. These include PayPal Beacon, Apple's iBeacon, shopkick's ShopBeacon and Qualcomm's Gimbal.

Other companies support cloud-based payments or payments made by scanning bar codes on a phone's screen. These include the Starbucks app, PayPal, Square Wallet and the upcoming Merchant Customer Exchange wallet.

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