ams AG (SIX: AMS), a leading provider of high performance analog ICs and
sensors, today announced that US-based DeviceFidelity, Inc. is using
unique ams RF technology in its latest CredenSE 2.10 Near Field
Communication (NFC) microSD card to enable secure, certified NFC
transmissions between any mobile phone and contactless payment terminals
from Visa and MasterCard.
DeviceFidelity CredenSE 2.10 is the world's first NFC microSD card to
successfully achieve global payment certifications from both Visa and
MasterCard without requiring external booster antenna or device specific
attachments. Using the AS3922 from ams, an integrated NFC front end with
Active Boost technology, CredenSE achieves a typical read range of 4cm
in a mobile phone's microSD slot.
The mobile phone is a notoriously difficult environment for RF and
variations between phone models make it difficult to consistently
achieve good performance. The stringent requirements for read range
compatibility with payment terminals for payment applications cannot be
met in small form factors such as SIM or microSD cards with a
traditional passive NFC card emulation front end and simple planar
Earlier SIM and microSD designs therefore used an additional component
such as an external booster antenna or external attachment to amplify RF
communication between tag and reader. The use of such external antennas
makes mass deployment impractical since it raises bill-of-materials
while also increasing the complexity of handling distribution and
support for a variety of different handset models.
The DeviceFidelity CredenSE 2.10 is the first commercially produced NFC
microSD card that meets EMV standards using only an ultra-small antenna
embedded in the car, making distribution and compatibility with
hundreds of phone models possible with one easy-to-deploy microSD card.
This means that it can be used to transform any mobile device with a
microSD card slot into a contactless payment device without any need for
device specific external antenna or attachments. DeviceFidelity has been
granted global patents for the design and functionality of such an NFC
microSD with built-in antenna and active front end.
The certified solution has been achieved primarily through the use of
the Active Boost capability in the AS3922, working in conjunction with a
DeviceFidelity-designed 3D miniature antenna, which actively transmits
in response to a point-of-sale reader, in contrast to the passive load
modulation normally supported by NFC tags.
Active Boost allows for robust tag-to-reader communication at a coupling
factor 100 times higher than is possible with conventional passive tag
designs. The AS3922 also offers unique Antenna Auto Tuning and Q factor
adjustment, which are critical to microSD, SIM and µSIM applications.
The IC includes an ACLB interface for communication with the contactless
interface of any Dual Interface Secure Element, and DCLB and NFC-WI
interfaces for digital communication.
Use of the AS3922 with a 3D antenna also provides for smooth operation
with any payment terminal by eliminating the need for the user to hold
the phone in any orientation.
In addition to successful performance with Visa and MasterCard payment
terminals, DeviceFidelity's CredenSE microSD also provides an option for
service providers to deploy mass transit and physical access
"The CredenSE 2.10 NFC microSD packs DeviceFidelity intellectual
property, years of innovation and expertise, to offer a high performance
plug-and-play NFC card emulation solution that is easy to distribute by
any service providers in a device- and network-agnostic fashion. This
technology breakthrough is made possible by the AS3922's ability to
realize reliable NFC transmissions on most phones while meeting the size
constraints of a tiny antenna," said Tuan Dao, EVP of Technology at
"DeviceFidelity is leading the way in the enablement of NFC microSD
payments on mobile phones globally, so ams is delighted that it selected
the AS3922, which offers superior RF performance in the
space-constrained microSD form factor," said Mark Dickson, Senior
Product Marketing Manager of ams.
Price & Availability
The AS3922 NFC tag front end is in volume production now. Please contact
your local sales office for more details. For further information please
Download Press Picture or Block Diagram of this IC at
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