Tyfone, First Data and NXP have collaborated on a product called SideTap, which is launching today and will enable mobile users to make contactless payments thanks to their microSD memory card. The card itself retains all of the storage functions you would want, but is also chock-full of security features to ensure your transactions are locked tight.
SideTap really is the perfect implementation for NFC payments – Zoompass is doing some neat stuff with their mobile tags, but they really don’t communicate much with the phone itself; it’s just slapped on the back of your phone for the sake of convenience. By plugging into the memory card slot, SideTap enables a bunch of potential on the software side, like, for example, pin number authentication, receipts, transaction altering (like to add a tip)… All sorts of cool stuff. The SideTap itself reminds me of the kind of convergence we’re seeing in Eye-Fi SD cards that manage to shunt pictures stored on it to the Wi-Fi network whenever available. The press release is mum on availability and pricing, but we’ll be keeping our eye out for more info.