NFC tags, a technology commonly used to enable contactless payments through a mobile device at the pump and at vending machines, are making their way to the physical point-of-sale. Computop, a Bamberg, Germany-based provider of omnichannel and fraud-prevention solutions, announced on Tuesday Computop Close-by, a payment solution that uses NFC tags to enable consumers to pay at the point-of-sale using their smart phone without an app or registration.
Computop Close-by connects consumers to a pre-configured payment page on their phones, as the current generation of smart phones responds directly to the NFC signal without having to activate the device and camera app. Once the payment page has been called up, the consumer selects her preferred payment method to complete the transaction using a mobile wallet such as PayPal or Click to Pay.
With NFC tags, payments can be made in-store by scanning digital price tags on the shelf, the product label, or promotional signage, to call up the payment page, Computop says.
Transactions made with NFC tags are considered secure because NFC coding is permanent and cannot be overwritten, the company says. Overlapping by a fraudulent signal is also ruled out, as smart phones do not react to overlapping radio signals.
In addition, Computop Close-by will enable payment flexibility for consumers in the United Kingdom when paying at electric-vehicle charging stations. Many U.K. charging stations require consumers to download an app, go to the company’s Web site, or use an RFID card to pay. Computop Close-by brings e-commerce payment methods such as PayPal, Direct Debit, or Alipay into play, the company says.
Other uses for Computop Close-by include soliciting donations. The amount of a donation can be transmitted directly so that only confirmation by the donor on the smart phone is necessary. Since passive NFC tags do not require their own power supply, digital donation is possible everywhere network coverage is available, Computop says.
“Computop Close-by is, like many innovations, an intelligent combination of existing technologies,” Ralf Gladis, founder and co-owner of Computop, says in a prepared statement. “The NFC process combined with an efficient e-commerce checkout makes a variety of payment situations easier and more flexible. That is why we have applied for international patent protection for this product.”