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Tonny Xu
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Nice insights from +Paul Chapman 
Apple Pay Is Here: What We Learned from Digital Money and Mobile Wallets in Japan

Japan has the most mature digital money and mobile wallet ecosystem in the world. Digital payment cards like Suica, PASMO, Nanaco, Waon and Rakuten Edy are household names in Japan. As the translated table from Japanese Wikipedia shows, there are tens of millions of each type of card issued. However, this revolution has very taken a long time to unfold because it didn’t really solve a painpoint for consumers, it solved cash handling issues for merchants and revenue issues for issuers.

NFC based digital money is used for public transport, merchant affinity payment cards and pretty much anywhere else it can be shoehorned in by issuers, acquirers and merchants. But can we really call it a win for consumers?

1. NFC Is Perfect For Transport
Japan’s version of NFC (FeliCa) is tweaked to be super fast. Japan Rail’s maximum processing times for transactions are multiple times faster than requirements in other countries. Imagine just how many people pass through turnstiles every day in Tokyo and you get an idea of how fast it needs to be (I’ve heard sub 300ms).

People in the acquiring technology space in Japan obsess about processing speed, but not at all about the rest of the experience, and therein lies the rub. NFC was not really made for consumers, it was made for issuers and merchants.

2. Charging NFC Plastic Cards is Kafkaesque
Withdrawing cash from the ATM or debiting my credit card to charge another card is a ridiculously redundant act. Major Japanese cities have “the best” 4G of any developed nation, and yet I can’t use an app or website to charge my prepaid digital money card without specialized hardware. This is because the card needs to be written to securely. 

By comparison, MasterCard prepaid digital money cards (e.g. au wallet) store your balance on the server. This means you only need a secure login and an interface to charge it. Every transaction approval is sent to the issuer’s servers, just like a credit or debit card, so it’s trivial. Though not ideal for transport applications (too slow for Japan’s passenger volumes) but it happens to be fine for just about everything else.

3. Specialized NFC Hardware Costs More Money
Because NFC prepaid digital money stores the value on a chip, specialized hardware is needed to charge (write value) to the card. Sure you can do this at every convenience store in Japan, or via Japan’s mobile wallet solution (Osaifu Keita, only on Android), but it’s a major pain the UX!

In the case of the Android only mobile wallet implementation, each card issuer provides their own software. This software is so universally bad that you literally cringe every time you go to top up your balance. Also unlike credit cards, you don’t know what you bought or where. Most prepaid digital money cards, such as Suica, have limited transaction data with overly simple descriptions like “purchase of goods”, “charge” or “entered [station name] exited [station name]”. Why would you possibly want anything more?

These frustrations serve as a visceral reminded that issuers don’t really want you to check your balances or payment history frequently. Simply put, they show very little concern in making the user experience better because it wasn’t made for you in the first place. It was made for them!

4. NFC is Already an Old Technology
Japan’s NFC implementation was imagined for a different world. One without rich smartphone experiences and without ubiquitous, high speed wireless networks. It was also imagined in a world where merchants and payment networks could force solutions onto consumers through relentless marketing, regardless of how useful the solution actually was. Japan does this a lot because consumers are used to it, and we put up with it. I truly Apple succeeds at  setting a new standard for future endeavors.

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I want to go to the Tokyo motor show!
第43回東京モーターショー。カワサキブースのコンセプトバイクがかっこええええwww未来すぎるwww | @attrip (アットトリップ)

+Ming Zhang 我要Helpouts的Code!帮帮我吧。

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My god… A+++

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Can someone explain this to me???
Holy kaw, this guy is a great cartoonist about business.

If you don't laugh at his stuff, it means you're clueless.

Hat tip: +Bill Meade


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This is for you, +Tatsuya Arai!
GMail in Vim. Because, that's why.

#vim  via +Sam Stern 

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@钢铁侠    李天一律师:法院调查组织卖淫 我很欣慰。

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36 photos about 127 years of Statue of Liberty history

Great photos that show the history of the great lady.

Photo credit: Library of Congress


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My friend +Christian Inkster just released his new iOS app EasyBeats 3, music fan should definitely watch this video and download his new app!

Well done! +Christian Inkster 
EasyBeats 3 Finally out world wide today!  Get it for the first week for 60% Off (like $1.99 in AU and US).  Download it and tell everyone! Thanks!

Download link:

#eb3   #ios   #iphone   #ipad   #apple  
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