B-Id: Evolutionary Leap for Smart Display Cards

Articles | By B-Id | 12 August 2014
Keeping an eye on the current balance – by means of a display, store value cards can display stored information any time. Keeping an eye on the current balance – by means of a display, store value cards can display stored information any time. Photo: B-Id

Smart Cards: One Time Password (OTP) and Store Value Cards

E-Paper Displays with Dot Matrix and Color Display Extend the Range of Applications for Smart Display Cards

Revolutionary developments of RFID Smart Display Cards are nearly ready for the market. E-paper displays with dot matrix and color display were going to provide entirely new options to display information, reports Yiwen Jin, Managing Director B-Id in an interview with „RFID im Blick“. The company has already achieved great progress in the developments of Smart Display Cards and offers all ISO card types with One Time Passwort (OTP) function for online banking applications, for instance. B-Id now works at full speed on the development of further innovative functions that are going to enter the next development stage in the course of next year. „Currently we are testing the service life of a Smart Card battery that can be recharged via NFC interface. This battery could be used to power functions, such as displays or sensors which require internal energy supply.“

Yiwen Jin, Managing Director B-Id, in an interview with Dunja Kandel, „RFID im Blick“

Revolutionary Colored E-paper Display

„OTP cards that are currently available in the market either use a flexible LCD or E-paper display“, reports Yiwen Jin on the technical status of Smart Display Cards. Flexible LCDs have two significant weaknesses: Firstly they might leak when they are damaged, secondly they require permanent energy supply for operation. This is not the case for e-paper displays. However, the display options are limited by a segment display. „This is why we are working on a dot matrix display at the moment that does not only enable the depiction of numbers, but also Roman, Arabian, or Chinese characters flexibly. Moreover, we are working hard on presenting cards with colored e-paper display this year. The new display types could open entirely new fields of applications, providing information for maintenance and control on machines, for instance.“

Charging Battery via NFC

B-Id is also working on an NFC interface for power supply. From developer perspective, NFC has two advantages: After production, programs in the IC of the OTP card used to be unchangeable. Nowadays a change is possible due to the contactless NFC interface“, says Yiwen Jin. „NFC can also be used as charging interface. Currently, B-Id tests rechargeable batteries for quality and reliability. The test period will probably continue until the end of the year. In parallel, the company tests another innovative technology in a project in the Asian market. „Using finger print sensors on the contact-based health insurance card, the user identifies himself at a terminal. The card matches the fingerprint with a stored print. The technology is already finished and objects for demonstration are available.“

Applications for OTP and Store Value Cards: Europe falls behind USA and Asia

When it comes to the use of store value cards with display and OTP cards, a clear scale could be seen in global comparison. „The US has already started using OTP cards last year and go ahead, regarding the number of projects, followed by Asia. Europe falls behind in this comparison. In general, all providers are still waiting for a breakthrough.“ That a breakthrough remained unachieved up to now was due to the pricing, according to Yiwen Jin. „The most expensive display card elements are the MCU chip and the display driver IC. For low margins of up to 10,000 pieces, the price of a Mifare card is about ten euros, for instance, in contrast to one euro for a card without display. This is why everybody is waiting for big mass applications. At a volume of one million pieces the price would go down to five euros. The first projects for access, transport, or ticketing have already been realized.“

Last modified on Friday, 22 August 2014 14:27
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