12.31.18 Your morning briefing
The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the Web:
PNC's e-ink credit card
PNC bank is testing a credit card with an e-ink panel that changes the three-digit code on the back to a new one every so often.
The test, which began in November, is meant to determine how often the CVV code needs to change to prevent fraud while also remaining active enough to allow users to complete an online purchase, Ars Technica reports.
The cards, provided by Idemia, would last four years if the CVV refreshes every hour. A higher refresh rate would shorten the card's lifespan by depleting its battery faster, the article states.
A bigger Grab
Grab — a Southeast Asian rival to Uber with a focus on financial services — is looking for bigger funding.
The company has raised the target of its Series H round to $5 billion from an earlier target of $3 billion, TechCrunch reports.
The Grab Financial platform launched in March to offer payments, rewards and loyalty services as well as insurance and financing. In October, Grab partnered with Mastercard to offer a prepaid card to its users.
Starting young with wearable tech
Wearable tech is a common theme in the payments world, with companies such as Visa and Barclays testing concepts for sunglasses, jackets, and other types of apparel or accessories.
The technology is coming to school uniforms in China, where chips embedded in school uniforms would track when students enter and leave school grounds, The Verge reports, citing China's state-run newspaper.
The concept, which pairs with cameras for facial recognition (so as to prevent students from swapping outfits to game the system), isn't necessarily planned for use in payments — but it's not that far off from what retailers in the U.S. are doing. It most closely resembles Amazon Go's system of using a smartphone app and cameras to track shoppers as they navigate its cashierless store.
From the Web
Northern Va. looks into expanding mobile fare payments
WTOP | Fri December 28, 2018 - The Northern Virginia Transportation Commission is moving forward with developing mobile ticketing options similar to the Virginia Railway Express mobile payment app, which could lead to a single app to pay for everything from PRTC and Loudoun County commuter buses to local bus service in Arlington.
Will Facebook’s stablecoin project help crypto or hurt it?
VentureBeat | Sun December 30, 2018 - Both Facebook and cryptocurrencies have had a bad year. Could they do better, together, in 2019? Facebook apparently thinks so. The company discreetly formed an internal unit early this year dedicated to exploring blockchain technology — led by David Marcus, former president of well-trusted PayPal.
Can China’s Alipay, WeChat cash in as Indonesia embraces QR codes?
South China Morning Post | Mon December 31, 2018 - The push to sign up these offline merchants is the latest battle ground between GoJek and Grab, which are vying to become Indonesia’s – and eventually Southeast Asia’s – go-to “superapp”, much like WeChat is to China.
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How U.S.'s Poni Card built a remittance network on Mexican ATMs
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Former Amex chief Ken Chenault leaves P&G, IBM director posts
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U.K. credit card spending climbs as consumers prefer plastic
U.K. credit card spending rose an annual 7.5 percent in November, as consumers increasingly prefer to spend on plastic, according to UK Finance.