android

Google’s new mobile wallet

 Google has finally launched its mobile wallet in US of course. They have been trialing this new near field communication (NFC) technology since may 2011 in US. NFC allows for wireless connections, data exchange and simplified transactions between two devices in very close proximity, that’s the “near field” hence the name. The technology is linked to Mastercard for now but we are promised that Visa and American Express and Discovery are planned for future versions. Currently only the Nexus S smart phone, running the Google Android operating system is able to use this technology and you will need a Citi Mastercard or Google prepaid card as well, and be in US. All this is some way for anyone in Europe but don’t worry UK will be the first International market in the New Year.

 

In the past I have raised the security issue, I think it is still not fully resolved. However, we are told that transactions require a Mobile wallet 2Personal Identification Number (PIN) and the phone’s screen must be turned on, preventing covert or unwanted payment events, and the wallet function can also be disabled remotely. We will have to see how well this counters the hackers, I want to know what happens when the inevitable occurs and whether the cost is to be carried by me or someone else. What is the likely cost of insurance against fraudulent action? All these need to be answered before I buy into this new technology no matter how convenient.

 

 

 

If you want to know more about the various business and technological models which are being considered for the provision of mobile payments an the internationally renowned Business School in Barcelona (GFT and IESE) has looked in to this (http://bit.ly/pESnlv). I refer you to this article titled “The Holy Grail: The Mobile Wallet”                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  

http://bit.ly/nZEgS3

Apple vs Android phone & tablet makers – UK likely to rule on Apple patents before Germany

 

This battle royal has been working its way through the European courts in the Netherlands and Germany, and is ongoing in UK as well.  The Android phone & tablet makers are battling with Apple over patents. The chances are it will be long drawn out battle with very high stakes as android devices are becoming increasingly popular. If the UK rule first it will impact on any German decision.

What does this mean for you and me owners of android technology, well if like me you already have an android device your OK for now. Later if the court rule in favour of Apple we will need to see. If the android market is as big as people say it will be then presumably android device manufacturers will probably pay royalties. The worst case scenario is I suppose that they decide to go down another route and stop android device production going forward – only time will tell. I will keep a watchful eye out on proceed and report back.

Any legal eagles who know about patent law out there might like to input here and through some light on what likely to happen – as I am but a humble android user with no legal background.

httdoesp://on.ft.com/rnGUbw

NFC smartphones get on the buses boost

 

Mobile wallet concept is getting closer with the announcement by UK’s largest transport operator, FirstGroup, that it will be installing contactless card readers to its fleet of approximately 5,000 buses across England in 2012. This is the first bus fleet outside London to announce such a move. Once installed customer s will be able to use contactless debit or credit cards and ITSO smartcards such as concessionary bus passes. The company said it was installing this to speed up how long it takes passengers to board – cutting journey times by around 10 per cent.

On the surface this seems a step forward, however I have to ask will this mean an increase in fares to help fund the installation costs – I will keep my eyes open for more information and post in a blog in the future.

 http://bit.ly/rrVJC6

BBC Android App maps UK for 3G coverage

The BBC have launched a new survey for 3g coverage across UK for all Android phone users. Its free so sign up and it will tell you what system 2G or 3G you are currently using as a % and at the end of the survey you will get a map showing cirrent3G coverage across UK. The more of use that sign up the more accurate it will be. What ahave you got to loose.

http://bit.ly/qePROI

Google Calendar’s bug for android phone users.

Came across this article, is anyone with an Android phone being effected by this Google calendar bug ?  If so have you found a solution? I would be interested to any comments/solutions as Google do not seem to be very forthcoming on this point.

http://bit.ly/iN5f9U


The mini PC in your pocket

Smartphones are become more popular by the day spearheaded  initially by the iPhone and more recently with the many android phones such as the Samsung Galaxy S and new S2.

Only a week or ago Orange/Barclaycard announced UK first mobile wallet, O2 then announced their product coming soon, and finally Google announced a wallet android App coming to US customers later in the year. The increasing uses for the smartphone and the rapidly expansion of  purchasing of consumers via mobile broadband  have spooked even Microsoft.

Microsoft can see the future changing where smartphones will take over from PC’s and their business disappears overnight. In the last three months of 2010, 94m PCs were sold – and 100m smartphones, this is the first time smartphone sales have out stripped PC’s. Now some of you may say so what, they have had a monopoly too long and made billions as we purchase PCs. No one denies that’s the case, but imagines our lives without the PC, laptop or the smartphone.

I don’t think Microsoft will disappear tomorrow as Bill Gates has been pretty good at seeing the future and won’t give up easily. Perhaps this is the reason for the  Microsoft purchase of Skype. But one thing is certain, unless companies like Microsoft can adapt to the rapidly changing environment and consumers demand they will be doomed to fail.

http://gu.com/p/2pgpz

Mobile phones bring the cashless society closer

The mobile wallet is becoming more of a reality day by day. Orange have launched their product, O2 will soon follow, and Google announced their android model for US market. It is only a matter of time before its in Europe.

So where does this leave the man in the street, initially we have to go for a new mobile with the appropriate chip so this will cost us more. But I sure in time these costs will come down and all mobiles will have the option. The question will we take up this new technology? What factors will dictate the speed of uptake.

Clearly, cost is a factor, availability at retailers another, but as most retailers prefer a cashless transaction for speed and convenience, they will probably make this happen. The young customer will quickly pick this up as they seem to have a mobile attached at birth. Us oldies will take a little longer! Also security is always a concern, I am sure this is well addressed, but the oldies like me need a little convincing all is ok on this.

How will the mobile phone companies manage the increase volume of enquiries – their track record is not great on this if you read Ofcom reports. But the era of the mobile wallet is with us the only question is how fast will it be taken up.

http://t.co/6FG9J0s via @guardian