Whenever we take out credit card and tap on a reader to pay at a store, the technology being used it called Near Field Communications (NFC). This technology allows a chip inside your credit card to communicate within the terminal to process your payment.
With that said, over the past few years we have begun seeing practically every credit card on the market has become a “tap & pay” system.
All you have to do is tap your credit card on the payment terminal, and you can be on your way.
What is the future of NFC?
The NFC tag within your credit card is turned off until it is within close range of a payment terminal.
With smartphones getting better and better as time passes on, you will find that NFC technology can either act as the transmitter or as the receiver.
With that in mind, you will find people being able to tap to transfer pictures, contact info, etc
What interests me the most is the fact that smartphones can become a housing for your credit cards. Essentially, you can activate your credit card on your smartphone, and then “tap & pay”.
Google has recently unveiled the Google Wallet, a digital wallet, making full use of what NFC technology offers. The Google Wallet allows people to take their smartphone and make purchases with it with the credit card information stored on it. Some people can also store loyalty card information on it, allowing them to leave those cards out of their wallet.
As you can see below, the Google Wallet is being used at a register to cash out. I for one cannot wait when this service is available in Canada. It will be so easy to pay for items when you just have to take your phone and put it near an NFC terminal.
Now you may be asking yourself how can this be secure at all? What if I lose my smartphone?
The way I see it working is that with banks having their mobile apps on the market, what can easily happen is that you log into your account, and form there have your credit card show up on the screen, which then allows you to perform the simple “tap & pay” system NFC technology allows you to do.
This way your credit cards are only active once you log into your account, making it secure, but a little longer time wise, seeing as you can easily just pull out your credit card and pay faster than the time it takes to log onto your bank account.
How I see it, this technology is ideal for people who want to lighten the load on their wallet, or even for those who may have left their wallet at home.
ING Direct is already making moves onto this technology as they recently updated their U.S. mobile banking app to perform Bump payments. This allows people to send and receive money through their iPhones by simply “bumping” their phones together.
It is definitely something to look forward to in the future; technology advances at such a quick pace that there is nothing we can’t expect to see.
image source: y 2Tales