My kids gave me a new Union Jack wallet for Christmas, forcing me to answer the question in Capital One’s old adverts, “What’s in your wallet?”
Capital One credit card (the advert worked!), personal debit card, business debit card, supermarket credit card, 2nd debit card, supermarket loyalty card, petrol loyalty card, 2nd supermarket loyalty card, Oyster card. That’s just the mag stripe and chip cards! The back of my wallet contains 15+ membership cards all of which need to be used at least once a month.
That got me to thinking about these new-fangled electronic wallets. The University of Toronto has put together a Global Overview of Digital Wallet Technologies. There are almost as many digital wallets as real, physical ones!
Google, Apple, ISIS, PayPal, MasterCard, Visa. All these companies are striving to be “the wallet” but they seem to have forgotten one person – the consumer. I really don’t care who wins the wallet wars. I don’t even think there will be a single winner. All I want as a consumer is some way of carrying the vast number of cards I now have in a more convenient way.
NFC is set to take off in the UK with widespread merchant acceptance and card issuance. Transport for London is replacing Oyster with any NFC payment card and other transport providers are picking up the technology. The 7 million Oyster card users will all become NFC users making London a NFC hotspot.
Next year, I’d like a digital wallet that supports NFC for Christmas. I don’t want 10 digital wallets, I want one. I want to choose the one I like and have the ability to move my cards easily and quickly to another one if I choose. And I want it to support all my payment cards as a minimum. Is that too much to ask Santa for?