23-08-2016 | | By Paul Whytock
Californian wearable technology specialists NFCRing says it has developed the world's first EMVCo compliant payment ring. The ring is based on a contactless security chip manufactured by German chipmaker Infineon Technologies.
Unlike many smart rings this one is waterproof which means you are less likely to leave it on the side of a washbasin. It has a discreet design that resembles everyday wedding rings and, very importantly, does not use a battery.
It works like a contactless payment card. Users can pay by holding the ring closely to an EMVCo contactless-enabled payment terminal. The ring uses NFC (Near Field Communication) technology to communicate data over short distances.
The EMVCo standard facilitates worldwide interoperability and acceptance of secure payment transactions. Management of specifications and related testing processes is driven by EMVCo’s six member organizations American Express, Discover, JCB, MasterCard, UnionPay and Visa.
Developers of the ring had to overcome design challenges such as small surface area and dimensions as well as the shape of the ring. In addition the absence of a battery makes contactless transactions more difficult.
The developers say they overcome these problems thanks to the energy-efficient payment security chip from Infineon. The chip communicates via its tiny passive antenna with the terminal and activates the secured payment and completes cryptographic processing.
The developers also claim it is the only solution available on the market that complies with timing requirements of a few milliseconds whilst working at a distance of up to 4cm from a reader.