ST-Pay Topaz offers card vendors a unique best-in-class platform to address a wide range of markets.

Mr. Bruno Batut, Head of Banking & ID, Secure MCUs Division, STMicroelectronics
Mr. Bruno Batut, Head of Banking & ID, Secure MCUs Division, STMicroelectronics

STMicroelectronics has recently released the next generation of its STPay system-on-chip (SoC) payment solution, leveraging state-of-the-art technology to increase contactless performance and protection, reduce power demand, and significantly improve the user experience. Mr. Bruno Batut, Head of Banking & ID, Secure MCUs Division, STMicroelectronics talked here more about this product and applications.

Can you please highlight the recent technology trends in secure MCUs?

The Secure MCU market has been driven by the move from contact to contactless operation, both in smartcards and smartphones, especially to enable payment by phones. Moving ahead, we expect security to go into many other industrial and automotive applications, requiring strong authentication and/or secure connectivity that Secure MCUs bring.

In addition, the Smartcard banking market is also evolving, with the massive worldwide migration from contact to dual-interface (IF) smartcards, pushed primarily by the major payment schemes such as Visa or MasterCard. Their goal is to increase security while improving the user experience and convenience for the card holder. This market requirement is driving our development of state-of-the-art Dual-IF certified secure ICs & EMV (Europay, Mastercard, Visa) solutions that support the many payment scheme applications.

What are the latest requirements in banking and ID payment solutions?

Banking and ID markets are quickly moving to contactless technologies; more precisely they are adopting Dual Interface (IF) for banking, which keep the legacy of contact transactions while adding the convenience of RF transaction capability. This dual-IF approach can be operated with any standard RF reader / terminal. In 2019 Dual-IF card shipments will exceed those of contact cards. Banking markets in EMEA and China are already far along in migrating to Dual IF; the migration from contact to Dual IF is now accelerating in the Americas, South Asia, and the Middle East and Africa.

Share details about your newly launched STPay-Topaz family and its advanced features?

STPay-Topaz is the new product from the STPay product family, a complete range of certified EMV (Europay, Mastercard, Visa) solutions. Devices in the family support both contact and Dual-Interface (IF) technologies and support more than 10 payment schemes. With > 1 billion parts shipped and > 40 customers WW already using STPay, the family is a reference in the market.

ST-Pay-Topaz is based on the newly introduced & certified ST31P IC that takes advantages of best-in-class RF performance with low power to assure a great user experience for the card holder, while offering the card vendor multiple packaging options (modules + antennas) to optimize cost and performance. For example, STPay-Topaz can process a full MChip (MasterCard EMV standard applet) transaction in 200 msec, 100 msec faster than the standard requires.

Beyond pure HW performance and have already passed the highest security certification, STPay-Topaz offers a wide scope of banking applications from International brands (Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, Discover, JCB, CUP) and from regional ones (Rupay in India, ELO in Brazil, Interact in Canada, BankAccept in Norway, EFTPOS in Australia, Thai Banker Association, among them with more to come soon). In sum, ST-Pay Topaz offers card vendors a unique best-in-class platform to address a wide range of markets.

For customers required to hold both a transport application and a banking application, STPay-Topaz can offer flexibility to support both, thanks to ST being a licensee of both Calypso and Mifare technologies, which are the most popular transport backbones worldwide: these transportation applications come as an option in the STPay-Topaz platform offering, to increase convenience and enlarge the scope of usage of the platform.

How this product differs with traditional system?

ST31P hardware has demonstrated its superior performance, especially in RF performance.  (Note: ST31P includes RF technology acquired from ams NFC IP in 2016, which ST had previously licensed and used the technology in our NFC controllers for smartphones: ST21NFCD. The ST31P is the first smartcard IC to embed this best-in-class RF IPs. It offers 2 main advantages to the customers:

  • Successful product operation with good performance, even in poor conditions, such as for example, in China, where some readers may not be fully ISO-compliant, because they provide less energy than what is required by ISO standard). Under “normal” conditions, performance (i.e. transaction time and/or RF operating distance between card and readers) are excellent, with results proven by various evaluation laboratories
  • A wide choice for the customer to select any packaging (module + antenna) technology in which STPay-Topaz will be embedded: as STPay-Topaz operates with excellent performance with any standard 68 pF antenna proposed on the market, card manufacturer can better optimize packaging for better cost efficiency.

Beyond these HW advantages, STPay-Topaz offers a wide range of banking and transport applications (Calypso and Mifare, along with Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, Discover, JCB, CUP and Rupay in India, ELO in Brazil, Interact in Canada, BankAccept in Norway, EFTPOS in Australia, and Thai Banker Association), which offer a wide scope of addressable markets for a given customer with one product.

Last but not least, ST has been part of Entrust Datacard (EDC) partner program since 2015: as such, EDC, a WW leader of personalization equipment for smartcards, has developed standard personalization scripts working on STPay-Topaz, so that ST customers can easily have a complete end-to-end solution to deliver a finish product to their customers.

Which are the type of applications it will cater?

STPay-Topaz works with banking applications from International brands (Visa, MasterCard, AmEx, Discover, JCB, CUP) as well as with regional ones (Rupay in India, ELO in Brazil, Interact in Canada, BankAccept in Norway, EFTPOS in Australia, Thai Banker Association… more to come soon). This complete offering gives card vendors a unique best-in-class platform to address a wide range of markets.

For customers required to hold both a transport application and a banking application, STPay-Topaz can offer flexibility to support both, thanks to ST being a licensee of both Calypso and Mifare technologies, which are the most popular transport backbones worldwide: these transportation applications come as an option in the STPay-Topaz platform offering, to increase convenience and enlarge the scope of usage of the platform.

What are pricing options and where are samples available?

ST is offering samples in white cards or with various type of module technologies upon demand. Please contact your ST sales office.

 

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