Julie May: Credit Cards Becoming Extinct

Julie May: Credit Cards Becoming Extinct

With new technology released every day, will credit cards become a thing of the past, just as road maps, alarm clocks and encyclopedias have?

Digital wallets such as Wocket and Coin, which will arrive in 2014, are hinting at “yes.”

Digital wallets provide users a way to pay for purchases by swiping a card that holds personal information, such as your credit and debit cards, loyalty cards and gift cards.

starbucks-ios-app.pngWhile some apps, such as Starbucks, serve as digital wallets, they are typically single-purposed. For example, the Starbucks app allows me to maintain a credit balance for purchases at Starbucks only. I go into the coffee shop, order a grande latte, show them the bar code on my phone and, voila, the amount of my purchase has been deducted from my balance. That was pretty neat 18 months ago. Now, not so much.

Fast forward to 2014, when digital wallets will be in our pockets and purses. It was only a matter of time before plastic was going to be passe and apps would clutter our phones just as email does our inboxes. I’m not sure that is going away anytime in the next year, but I do know that payment using a digital wallet has the potential to make my life a little less cluttered. While not all of the details have been released, a peek under the tree is merited.

The Wocket

Enter The Wocket, a programmable card that stores up to 100 cards of any type — gas cards, credit cards, loyalty cards, etc. It also stores cash and bar codes and displays personal identification.

The Wocket, which will be available in the first quarter of 2014, can be used anywhere credit cards are accepted. It also uses near field communications (NFC) technology, which will allow it to pay for tolls on highways by simply waving it near the payment reader.

The card isn’t reliant on Internet or phone technology, so you don’t need an app or Bluetooth to use it. Instead, it uses voice recognition and biometrics, such as a thumbprint, to gain access to your credentials. Like a traditional credit card, Wocket uses a magnetic strip that is immediately erased until the next time you enter your biometric verification. The battery lasts two to four years, at which time you can replace the batteries without having to purchase a new Wocket.

coin-smart-card-3.pngCoin is a viable competitor to the Wocket but requires the use of an app. The Coin card can store up to eight credit or loyalty cards, while the Coin app — which will be available for iOS and Android platforms — can store an unlimited number of cards. You can switch out the cards on your Coin card via the app, but note that you can only pair one Coin card with your smartphone.

One of the greatest benefits of Coin is that, despite its size, it’s difficult to lose — and even more difficult for people to steal. Utilizing Bluetooth low-energy (LE) technology, Coin will send a message to your phone whenever the connection is lost. It will then disable your Coin card until you reconnect them. If you’re known for leaving things behind, Coin may be your new best friend.

coin-buyThe battery lasts up to two years, after which you will need to purchase a new Coin. Right now you can pre-order a Coin card for just $50. If you wait until the 2014 summer release, it’ll cost you $100. When you order early, your payment will help Coin fund its development and manufacturing until release. For that element of risk, they company is cutting you a deal. You can use your soon-to-be-extinct credit card to pay for your Coin.

So folks, with the introduction of digital wallets like Wocket and Coin, it doesn’t matter how deep the pocket — you can expect its weight to shrink in 2014.

About NXT- ID Inc. – Mobile Security for a Mobile World:

nxt-idNXT-ID Inc.’s (OTCQB: NXTD) innovative MobileBio™ solution mitigates consumer risks associated with mobile computing, m-commerce and smart OS-enabled devices. The company is focused on the growing m-commerce market, launching its innovative MobileBio™ suite of biometric solutions that secure consumers’ mobile platforms. NXT-ID’s wholly owned subsidiary, 3D-ID LLC, is engaged in biometric identification has 22 licensed patents in the field of 3D facial recognition http://www.nxt-id.com/, http://3d-id.net/

About The Wocket™:

The Wocket™ is a next generation designed to replace all the cards in your wallet without draining your cell phone’s battery; no smart phone required. The Wocket works anywhere credit cards are accepted and only works with your biometric stamp of approval.

Visit the WOCKET website: TheWocket.com

Julie May is CEO of bytes of knowledge, which she founded in 1995 and has built into one of Nashville’s leading technology companies, providing digital media development and comprehensive IT services.

Visit bytes of knowledge online at: bytesofknowledge.com

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For more information: http://www.tennessean.com/article/20131222/BUSINESS/312220044/2264/BUSINESS04?gcheck=1

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