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Today in the Connected Economy: Lego, Epic to Build Kid-Friendly Metaverse

Today in the connected economy, Lego teams up with the creator of Fortnite to build a metaverse that’s family-friendly, while Apple and Dutch payments firm Adyen work to bring Tap to Pay to American iPhones. Plus, Mastercard opens a new tech hub in Ireland, and American Express and i2c launch a payments platform for FinTechs.

Lego, Epic Games Building Metaverse for Kids

Lego is working with Fortnite maker Epic Games to launch a kid-friendly metaverse. The companies called the effort “an immersive, creatively inspiring and engaging digital experience for kids of all ages to enjoy together.” They said the “family-friendly digital experience will give kids access to tools that will empower them to become confident creators,” but they provided little in the way of details.

Adyen Adding Tap to Pay to iPhones by End of 2022

Dutch payments group Adyen is collaborating with Apple to bring Tap to Pay to iPhones for customers in the U.S. later this year. Tap to Pay on iPhone lets businesses accept contactless payments through iPhone XS or later and a supporting app, including payments via Apple Pay, contactless credit or debit cards or other digital wallets.

Mastercard Opens European Tech Hub in Dublin

Mastercard has opened “One South County,” its European technology hub in Dublin, which lets the company accommodate more than 2,000 workers by 2025. Mastercard said it expects the hub to attract technologies aimed at shaping the future of commerce. The hub will likely feature experts in fields such as payments security, application programming interfaces (APIs) and emerging technologies. In addition, the hub will function as headquarters for “The Foundry,” Mastercard’s research and development division.

Amex, i2c Launch Payments Platform for FinTechs

American Express has launched an expanded multiproduct agreement with digital payments and banking company i2c to create payment solutions for Amex network customers. The companies’ combined platform will let FinTechs access Amex Offers, the Resy dining program, ticket pre-sales, and protection and fraud mitigation offerings. In addition, FinTechs will get access to pre-certified partners, like bank issuing BIN sponsors, giving them an easier time bringing their offerings to market.

Zilch, Experian Partner on Customer Affordability

British buy now, pay later (BNPL) company Zilch is working with Experian, a global information services company, to share reporting of BNPL credit data. The partnership with Experian continues Zilch’s efforts to ensure its customers’ financial health. Zilch said the use of credit data, open banking information and its proprietary behavioral statistics will offer a complete view of a customer’s creditworthiness. The collaboration allows Zilch to connect to Experian’s comprehensive database to determine how much its 2 million customers can afford.

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