The ‘thin client’ mobile Android based smart reader handles every payment protocol there is.
Contactless: EMV, FeliCa, MIFARE Hardware: EMV IC, Magnetic stripe QR Codes: D-Harai, Pay Pay, Line Pay, Ali Pay, WeChat Pay, Origami Pay, Rakuten Pay Reward Cards: D-Point, Ponta, Rakuten
GMO Payment Gateway provides the payments processing backend for Royal Gate and Daiwa House Financial handles the business client support side. The product video shows the business target: small cafes, restaurants, boutiques. With the ever-widening rollout of EMV contactless and QR Code payments, Japan is turning into a very interesting and unique intersection point of Western EMV payments, home-grown FeliCa and China market driven QR Code payment schemes.
I don’t think having home grown QR Code payment systems around is a bad thing even though most Japanese don’t use them. The value is that it gives Japanese banks and companies a bargaining tool to use with Apple, Google, Amazon, Alibaba Group and WeChat. Never get in a sword fight without a sword.
Back in the pre-iPhone era Japanese manufactures were busy churning out internet connected, e-wallet capable handsets with high quality cameras (for that time) that most of the western IT media pooh-poohed: ‘nobody needs all that fancy stuff’.
Unfortunately the Japanese IT media paid way too much attention to it all endlessly handwringing over the Galapagos Syndrome of Japanese technology that nobody seemed to need or want. Worse than that, people actually bought the media con. Then something strange happened in 2016 when Apple unveiled FeliCa Apple Pay and went global with it in 2017.
Weak Security and QR Code Chinese payment apps keep transaction records in Mainland China
Device needs be on and screen active
No ‘on the spot’ refunds
Merits of FeliCa (NFC-F) Payments
Works without network connection
Very fast transactions
High security and transaction records stay in Japan
Device can be in battery reserve mode sleep or screen off
On the spot refunds
Fortunately there is one Japanese journalist who is calling it: Masahiro Sano. Sano san’s latest piece on Nikkei notes the irony of Japanese companies falling over each other to roll out useless redundant QR Code platforms because QR Codes are “standard in China” (and nowhere else), while Apple and Google are deploying FeliCa as one more standard checklist item on their digital wallet platforms.
Fake QR Code payment mania confuses customers. Put another way QR Code payment platform apps are about de-centralizing the digital wallet into an ever-growing collection of apps while Apple Pay and Google Pay are about centralizing different technologies into a unified and smooth user experience for payments, tickets, IDs, reward cards and more. Which approach do you think will win in the long run?
It’s very strange that the JCB QUICPay network has gained the most benefit from the Apple Pay makeover of the Japanese contactless payments market instead of the Docomo iD network. Docomo invented the Osaifu-Keitai standard with Sony in 2004 and was the natural favorite, but iD has only treaded water while JCB has seen steady gains in QUICPay issue cards, customers and transactions.
Docomo iD problems boil down to bad blood between Docomo and Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) who issue and manage Docomo d-CARDs and help run the iD payment network. Up until 2016 VISA d-CARD was king. Then something happened. Things got so bad between the 2 companies that Docomo removed all VISA branding from their website and Docomo stores strongly urge new customers to create a Mastercard d-CARD not a VISA d-CARD. VISA might seem like the target here but SMBC, the first Japanese bank to issue VISA back in 1968, are the real power behind the VISA throne in Japan, and the real target for Docomo ire.
First of all Docomo and SMBC agree to start all over again to rebuild the d-CARD business and develop new services. <Nice boilerplate stuff with no promises and no deadline for delivering anything>.
Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group will buy back all outstanding shares of Sumitomo Mitsui Card Co. (34% of the company) from NTT Docomo by April 1, 2019. <Why does Docomo want out of the credit card business? Do they think that credit card industry pricing and fee structures are unsustainable in the face of ubiquitous contactless payments of all flavors, online banking and ever more competition? Do they think the credit card industry is going to have to live on far less and have to aggressively restructure? Or is it something else like getting out of the 2 year contract subsidizing business? Inquiring minds want to know.>
Docomo NTT and SMBC will work together to develop and deliver more cashless solutions and expand the iD network. <That sounds nice but what does it really mean? Is VISA finally joining the Apple Pay Japan party? Is Google Pay support coming on iD?>
Like all cold war detente agreements, the proof will be in the pudding.
New NFC Pay / EMV contactless capable readers are being deployed on J Mups systems along with the necessary backend support for VISA / Mastercard / American Express / J Speedy EMV contactless transactions. The flaky old FeliCa only but Apple Pay Suica Express Card dumb JREM readers are being swapped out with ultra reliable Panasonic JT R550CR units.
The Panasonic JT-R550CR has both FeliCa and EMV contactless certification.
Old J Mups JREM readers are not Apple Pay Suica Express Card savvy
The finicky UT1-Neo readers used by CardNet systems will also be gradually replaced with new EMV capable UT-X10 readers with the necessary EMV backend support that CardNet announced back in 2015. The current installed base of UT1-Neo readers is 200,000. Hopefully the migration to the new NFC Pay capable devices will not take too long.
J Mups and CardNet are very popular payment systems for smaller Japanese retailers and shops.
Beware the TMN UT1-Neo reader found in many local coffee shop chains such as Ueshima Coffee and Ginza Tsubakiya. If you have problems don’t place iPhone on the reader, hold it at a 45 degree angle.
The UT-X10 reader handles EMV, FeliCa MIFARE, chip and pin and mag strip transactions
Q: 日本だけの問題ですか? A: いいえ、中国でApple Pay 交通系 IC カード(北京と上海）のユザーが同じiPhone X NFC問題を報告している、アメリカでも iPhone X ユーザーがこのブログを見てからこのiPhone X NFC問題を気づいてる。自分の2018年1月製造した「Suica 問題あり」のiPhone Xが米国ではApple Pay使用する際同じ頻度のNFCエラーが発生しているので、2018年４月以前、全てのiPhone X生産がこのSuica・NFC問題が抱えていると考えられる。
Q: なぜ日本外のiPhone Xユーザーがこの問題を気付かないのか A: Apple Pay Suica エクスプレスカードおよびFeliCa環境が関係している。 日本レジ・POS・交通の決済インフラが高性能環境で、iPhone X Suica問題が目立つので分かりやすい。 欧米ではエクスプレスカード使用が無く、レジ・POS・交通の決済インフラが良くないので、通常のApple Pay使用で目立つことなく、分かりにくいです。
Q: iPhone X Suica問題確認方法は? A: iPhone X Suica 問題発生している場合、iPhone Xシリアル番号をコピーし、ここにペイスト。2018年４月以前生産した場合、NFCハードウェア不具合ありのiPhone Xです。