Pay with one single card or bring your wallet?
Number of stores where you can pay contactless has grown enormously last years. Contactless payments are meant to pay quick and easily for everyday purchases. That is because there is no need to enter your PIN or signature for amounts till € 25,-. Just by touching your card on a contactless card reader, the payment is received.
It is even possible pay contactless with your mobile device, just by touching your mobile device to the contactless card reader. For instance Apple Pay offers iPhone 6 users to pay with their Apple device at retail stores. In collaboration with MasterCard, Visa and American Express, Apple wants to replace consumer wallets, which seems a bit ambitious to me.
This is because other payments options are introduced each year and security remains an issue. In 2013 an American startup introduced the Coin and there was lots of media attention. Coin believes mobile devices will not replace all payment cards in the future and therefore they developed the Coin Card. This Coin is a programmed payment card with an e-ink screen that displays up to eight cards (debit, credit, loyalty, gift cards etc.). With Bluetooth you need to connect the Coin with your mobile device. With multiple accounts in just once place, you only have to carry your Coin card with you. Unfortunately the Coin is postponed till 2015 and can only be pre-ordered.
This week the American company Plastc launched their idea for the Plastc Card. This card shows lots of similarities to the Coin. Also on the e-ink screen of the Plastc Card you see all your payments and loyalty cards which you added. This card shall perform as intermediary as well and can be used for all kind of payments. Plastc Card can also only be pre-ordered and will be available in Summer 2015.
The introduction of using a single card for all your payments is criticized at security level. This new technology includes strong security features, though when disconnected with your smartphone, the single cards is useless. There has not been a solution yet to overcome this problem. So when you want to pay in the supermarket and you left your mobile device at home, the Card will block and you can not pay.
It will be a rat race between Coin and Plastc who will launch their card first. I rather prefer my wallet with lots of cards, but I can pay whenever and wherever I want, carrying more than eight cards with me.