Technology is always expanding into new consumer products, and credit cards are not an exception from the rising tide of innovation.
Witness the futuristic plans that are coming from the company Dynamics Inc., who plan on taking the credit card to version 2.0.
Making credit cards behave “smart” is not new. But in the past technology has perhaps made credit cards less secure than before. Think of the RFID cards of past years, where any hacker could use a near-field scanner to pick up a card’s information.
Welcome to the Latest Card Technology
One of Dynamics’ cards is a polar opposite of that RFID past: a card called Hidden that actually has a digital keycode that needs to be punched in for it to work. Yes, buttons are placed directly on the card itself! Without the code, the complete card number will not display, and the magnetic strip on the back will not work. Should you misplace your card, it becomes totally useless without that code. “If you lose the card or someone steals it, it’s a dead piece of plastic,”says Dynamics CEO Jeff Mullen.
Payment by Choice – Reward Points or Dollars?
Another Dynamics product called Redemption allows credit card customers to decide specifically how they want to pay for a product. The card has two buttons that can enable one to pay via credit or through a rewards account.
While this seems innovative, there is only a small niche of people that will be able to pay for many things through rewards programs. It’s a great marketing tool for credit card companies, however.
Credit or Debit? Just Push a Button…
And while we’re at it, why not add more than one account to a card? With the Multiaccount card from Dynamics, you’ll be able to choose what account to pay from by simply pressing a button.
While it’s unlikely that you would see a Visa and American Express card combined since the two companies are competing, you could very well see a credit/debit combination in the future. This might help to lighten wallets a bit, depending on the amount of cards a person normally carries on them.
Mind you, these cards are packed with silicon and powered by batteries. They’re impervious to elements such as water and have cool LED lighting to go along with the buttons. Some of them even have displays to conceal or show card account numbers.
So, the futuristic credit card is coming! Already companies like Citi are putting their name on these cards, but when will they be in the hands of consumers? Time will only tell. These cards are much more expensive than the dumb pieces of plastic that are normally issued, so companies are going to have to find a balance between those who will find these useful and people who find little or no value in the card of the future.
Here is a video demonstration of how these cards work: