You're at a coffee shop or restaurant and it's time to pay for your sustenance. After reaching for your wallet, you're presented with... an Android tablet? This particular scenario is taking place more and more often as small businesses are taking their point-of-sale systems mobile, and Leaf is one of the big contenders battling for market share in this industry. Its signature product, known as the LeafPresenter, is an Android-based tablet with a funky lip on the top right that allows for mag-stripe credit card transactions. While the first-gen version of the device has been out for some time, Leaf is ready to branch out later this summer with a new model that offers more functionality.
In addition to a newer forked version of Android (Leaf OS), the upcoming LeafPresenter throws in NFC, EMV and gift card support, as well as a 2MP front-facing camera, 1,280x800 display and better battery. Last but not least, the new device also includes support for a Leaf-branded third-party app store geared toward small business usage. While there's no specific cost to the tablet itself, business owners will need to fork over $50 per month for the opportunity to use it. Check the press release after the break for more.
After almost sixteen years of trying to encourage EMV adoption in the US, MasterCard has hit upon a potential reason why it's not catching on: its closed, proprietary standard. But that's changing today, with the financial giant announcing it's making some of its circuit card tech open to other US debit networks instead of waiting on them to come up with their own solution. An alternative to magnetic strips, EMV claims to provide more secure payments thanks to the use of cryptographic algorithms and user-specific PINs, but hasn't captured much interest outside of Europe and Asia. Perhaps in opening the standard, MasterCard and crew will spur its adoption stateside and thus garner more EMV followers. Of course, it has to catch on before NFC replaces cards entirely, rendering the issue moot.
MasterCard Strengthens Commitment to Make U.S. EMV Migration Easier
Opens Proprietary, Market-Ready Debit Solution to Speed Industry Adoption
PURCHASE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MasterCard today announced it is making some of the company's proprietary technology solutions available to other U.S. debit networks. This decision was made to provide an option to support debit EMV transactions and reinforce the company's continued support of the U.S. migration to the EMV standard.
"By making our EMV solution available today, debit networks, merchants, acquirers and processors can take advantage of a market-ready solution currently in place. This will allow financial institutions to begin issuing EMV cards across their portfolios immediately, rather than waiting for a new solution to be developed."
In opening this technology standard, MasterCard will allow acquirers to brand transactions originating from the Maestro AID (application identifier) for all debit networks within the United States.
"We felt it was important to take this step for the greater good of the future of U.S. payments," said Chris McWilton, president, North America, MasterCard. "By making our EMV solution available today, debit networks, merchants, acquirers and processors can take advantage of a market-ready solution currently in place. This will allow financial institutions to begin issuing EMV cards across their portfolios immediately, rather than waiting for a new solution to be developed."
Today's announcement is the latest in a series of decisions by MasterCard to advance the future of electronic payments in the U.S. With the availability of this technology, issuers will be able to simplify their EMV implementation and enabling chip entry with potentially lower costs. At the same time, as merchants and their acquirers map out their terminal plans, they will be able to further optimize their investments, simplify their certification processes and choose their routing of debit transactions.
"We have spoken extensively with the EMV Migration Forum and other groups about the need to cooperate and find a common way to support debit transactions," said Jane Cloninger, director, Edgar, Dunn & Company. "Based on our experience around the globe, this announcement is a good step to continue the momentum of the U.S. market's migration toward EMV. We applaud MasterCard for taking a leadership position in this turning point for the industry."
Additional details around the implementation of the Maestro AID will be made available to all parties involved in the coming weeks.
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