US Starbucks stores get Square mobile pay in November

Reuters

Smartphone-wielding Starbucks (Seattle, USA) customers in the United States will get a new way to pay in early November when the world's biggest coffee chain begins accepting Square (San Francisco, USA) Wallet mobile payments at its roughly 7,000 company-operated U.S. stores.

Starbucks , which has embraced new technology ranging from social media to mobile payments, on Thursday said it also plans to add digital tipping next summer - something sure to thrill its baristas.

Sierra Wireless and Cinterion beat Chinese in M2M rankings: report

Chinese manufacturers have cornered much of the technology sector, but when it comes to M2M modules they are being outpaced by their Western rivals, according to a new study from ABI Research.

Sierra Wireless (Richmond, Canada) and Cinterion (Munich, Germany) claim the top spots in a new ranking of M2M vendors published by ABI Research, while Huawei (Shenzhen, China) and ZTE (Shenzhen, China) come sixth and seventh.

The methodology assesses companies on the basis of unit shipments and revenues.

Bank of America tests technology to pay with phones

Reuters

Bank of America Corp (Charlotte, USA) is testing a technology that allows a customer to pay at a store register by simply scanning an image with a smartphone, such as Apple Inc's iPhone or Google Inc's Android devices.

The pilot program is being tested in Charlotte, North Carolina, where the second-largest U.S. bank is headquartered, and marks the latest effort by a financial institution to come out on top in the race to determine how people will pay for things in the future.

Widespread use of digital "wallets" to take time: Canada panel

Reuters

Canadian banks and telecom providers are scrambling to introduce smartphone digital "wallets," but the dream of completely abandoning the traditional billfold in favor of a smartphone is likely several years away, according to speakers at an e-commerce conference in Toronto on Tuesday.

Digital wallets will allow consumers to make cash and credit card transactions using their smartphones by swiping the phone past a sensor and then entering a PIN number to complete the payment.

Kentucky investigates smart-grid benefits

The Kentucky Public Service Commission (PSC) is looking into the introduction of a smart grid to boost energy efficiency and provide better services to consumers in the State.

The PSC has initiated a proceeding that it says will examine “all aspects” of smart grid technologies, including their implementation costs, any technical issues and the societal impacts they might have.

Gemalto acquires mobile payment platform from Ericsson

Dutch digital-security specialist Gemalto (Amsterdam, the Netherlands) has bought Ericsson’s Internet Payment Exchange (IPX) business for an undisclosed sum as it targets the fast-growing mobile-payments market.

The acquisition does not include the US operations of the Ericsson (Stockholm, Sweden) business.

IPX connects more than 1,000 customers globally to over 120 mobile network operators. The company also operates payment platforms as white-label services for a number of operators.

Mahindra Satyam launches "Connected Vehicle Concept"

Best known as a provider of IT services and consulting, Mahindra Satyam (Hyderabad, India) has launched a new vehicle infotainment and telematics service it is calling the “Connected Vehicle Concept”.

The company says that while other players are bringing standalone products to market it aims to position itself as an end-to-end service provider.

Telerad Tech launches telemedicine in eastern India

Telerad Tech (Bangalore, India), a healthcare IT specialist, has announced that its Cisco-based telemedicine services are now available in parts of eastern India.

The organization is using Cisco’s HealthPresence telemedicine platform to provide medical services to a number of villages, and it says more than 100 patients have already benefited from the technology.

Using the Cisco (San Jose, USA) system, Telerad doctors have been offering telemedicine consultations in the villages of Chattisgarh and Odisha, while another site in Rajasthan is scheduled to go live this month.

Smart meters to save $14 billion for UK homes, businesses: report

The introduction of smart meters to the UK could lead to savings of £65 a year for the average household, according to a new report from British Gas (Staines, UK) and Oxford Economics.

According to the study, the rollout of smart meters across the UK will lead to savings of approximately £14 billion ($22.7 billion) between 2012 and 2030, equating to an average saving per household of about £65 a year.

Operators urged to make M2M progress by leading analyst

M2M could fail to live up to its billing as the next big thing unless someone takes initiative and stops the fragmentation that currently afflicts the industry.

That seemed to be the message coming out of M2M: Beyond Connectivity, a seminar organized by European Communications magazine in London last week, where analyst speakers presented a rather pessimistic assessment of the state of the market.

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