Wearable ring Token raises $5M Series A: Enables contactless access to things and services

Token, a wearable ring that lets users make contactless transactions at millions of merchant locations raised a $ 5M Series A investment, bringing Token’s total funding to $ 7M. Investors include New York Ventures, Blockchange Ventures led by Ken Seiff and the VC fund Neo. The startup will use the funding proceeds to fine-tune its go-to-market efforts, hiring in in Rochester and New York City and forge partnerships.

The ring essentially uses a fingerprint sensor on the inside of the ring that scans users’ finger as they put it on to unlock things. Some of Token’s popular use cases are using the ring to log into Windows 10, or using it to access things across digital and physical touchpoints. The device combines 2FA (two-factor authentication) since it proves possession of the device along with the biometric second factor. Customers can expect using it instead of passwords, house key, credit card, car key, access badge and transit card.

“As a team, we are focused on making smart, elevated lifestyle accessories that give you complete control over your identity in a world where that is becoming harder (yet more critical) to do every day.” wrote Melanie Shapiro, CEO, and co-founder of Token

Key features of Token ring are internet connectivity via Bluetooth and NFC, waterproof body, and a two week battery life. It is currently being sold at $ 249 and comes with a USB inductive charger.

Postscapes: Tracking the Internet of Things

Gemalto launches first biometric card for contactless payments

Gemalto launches first biometric card for contactless payments

New EMV card reads the fingerprint of the person holding it and compares it with biometric details already held on the card. 

Digital security company Gemalto has announced it is to supply the world’s first biometric EMV card for contactless payments to the Bank of Cyprus.

Using fingerprint recognition instead of a PIN code to authenticate the cardholder, the new card will be compatible with existing payment terminals already installed in the country. When a customer places their fingerprint on the card’s embedded sensor, a comparison is performed between the scanned fingerprint and the reference biometric data already stored on the card.

According to Gemalto, replacing a PIN code with biometric authentication will facilitate higher value contactless transactions, which today are typically subject to strict value limits.

Read more: Fintech app Glance Pay heralded as ‘the next PayPal’

Energy and enrollment

This biometric sensor card doesn’t require an embedded battery. Instead, it is powered by the payment terminal itself. According to Gemalto, this means that its use won’t be limited by battery life or number of transactions.

Bank of Cyprus customers will be required to enroll for the cards at bank branches, where their fingerprints will be captured and the card activation process completed using a purpose-built tablet device to avoid over-the-air transmission of personally identifiable data.

“Bank of Cyprus customers will be first in the world to enjoy biometric convenience on a contactless payment card. Gemalto’s biometric sensor payment card is designed to provide maximum security and data privacy” said Bertrand Knopf, Gemalto’s executive vice president for banking and payment.

Gemalto launches first biometric card for contactless payments
Gemalto Biometric Payment Card (Credit: Gemalto)

“Using biometrics for contactless payments is a natural move as it fits in naturally with the gesture used to pay. It allows a better user experience, enabling higher transaction amounts without entering a PIN while benefiting from the convenience of contactless.”

Stelios Trachonitis, card centre manager at Bank of Cyprus added:  “Our customers will benefit from this innovative payment solution with the peace of mind that their biometric data never leaves their hands.”

Gemalto is currently in the process of being acquired by French aerospace and defense group Thales, in a deal that was agreed in mid-December 2017 and is thought to be worth around $ 5.43 billion.

Read more: Bank of America, FitPay partner to speed up wearable payments

The post Gemalto launches first biometric card for contactless payments appeared first on Internet of Business.

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