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VeriFone facilitates card swipe for through iPhone

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CIOL Bureau
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BANGALORE, INDIA: VeriFone Holdings Inc has announced that it will start shipping next month an app for the iPhone that pairs with a mag-stripe reader that attaches to the USB connector at the bottom of the device.  

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VeriFone’s entry, called PAYware Mobile, incorporates technology the San Jose, Calif.-based terminal maker has developed for its other product lines to mask card data and protect transaction security.

The card reader, which slides onto the iPhone from the back and features a card slot on the right side, encrypts card information at the moment of the swipe, using technology VeriFone calls VeriShield Protect. “Any data that makes its way into the iPhone is completely useless to criminals,” says Paul Rasori, a senior vice president at VeriFone.

Apple Inc.’s iPhone is making inroads with small businesses, making it a popular platform for payment applications. Among 283 small businesses surveyed by Boston-based research firm Aite Group LLC, some 25 per cent of those with revenues exceeding $1million annually had owners using an iPhone; among those with revenues between $100,000 and $1 million, the percentage was 12 per cent.

Versions of the PAYware Mobile app for BlackBerry devices as well as handsets running the Windows Mobile and Android operating systems are under development, though Rasori says these versions may not offer card-swipe hardware. The iPhone, he says, offers a consistent form factor, while the other smart phones vary significantly in size and shape, making it hard to mass-produce compatible swipers.

A number of software houses having introduced applications over the past year to let merchants process cards on smart phones.

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