Great stuff! If I remember correctly, the Bluetooth specification was around for many years before it saw integration into popular consumer electronics. MEMS and Nanotechnology also had a fairly long incubation period before it got traction. Maybe now is the time for NFC to take off? It is so difficult to pick winners and losers in technology. Sometimes the most innovative winners need to wait until the rest of us catch up before their utility is discovered. It's up to the early adopters to keep plugging away and the manufactures to be prepared for delayed gratification. ...Just ask an "overnight" singing sensation how many years they spent singing in bars for tips before the became an international phenom...
I have no doubt the e-wallet will be as ubiquitous as the smart phone is today is just a matter of time. One thing that stood out to me, though, was the comment about theft or losing a phone. I'm not sure what's more common--people losing their wallet or their smart phones? In the case of e-wallet based smart phones, I would think there is a ton of work to be done regarding security.
I, for one, would rather lose my smartphone. With all the passwords I have for the important apps, like banking, no one would be able to get into it. Of course, there are probably hackers out there that can troubleshoot my simple password, but it's better than losing my wallet and having someone be able to use my credit card immediately.
I'm still a bit confused about how NFC is an advantage over our cards. It's really not much trouble to swipe a card at the point of sale. I would also think there are plenty of security issues. I guess I don't see the problem this technology would solve.
Interesting technology. I don't think there's any doubt that something will replace the credit card but it is difficult to foresee what will tip the scales in favor of a specific technology. Certainly if NFC has already been five years in the making, there has been significant work on the communications side, plus also security. We'll have to wait and see if it is accepted in the marketplace.
I agree, Apresher, the market will decide. While the technology may now be embedded in a a number of smartphone brands, retailers would have to adopt the technology on a wide scale. Some retailers are testing it, but to reach critical mass, it would need to be hundreds of thousands of retailer outlets. Consumers won't accpet it until it fiarly ubiquitous.
What I don't get is what it saves in time or energy. You still have to select your card or checking acount. You still have to engage in some form of security (pin or signature). It seems that ending the swipe function is not enougha big enough change to warrant a wholesale revamp of technology.
Good point, Jon. Actually, eye recognition may be easier ultimately than fingerprints. Yet I still think the current system with a PIN is very efficient. I'm not convinved a new system can improve on the current system to a degree that warrants a massive switch in technology. Paying at the register current takes just a few seconds. Do we need to trim if from 18 seconds to 12 seconds?
John: I like your idea of the thumb print for ease of use. However, I wonder how the cost would compare to get something that is cheap enough to be installed all over the place, but safe enough to prevent somebody from lifting a finger print and using some simple techniques to transfer it onto something stuck on a perpetrator's finger. The 16-year-old minding the cash register probably won't be paying that close attention.
Rob: Any idea of how those eye scanner would work with those of use with glasses - especially with "more robust" perscriptions? At first look, I'm not a fan of anything but medical equipment shining in my eyes.
No need to implant a chip--we all have a fingerprint. Several years ago I asked a technology expert at fingerprint-sensor manufacturer why credit-card companies didn't use a finger scanner at checkouts and point-of-sale terminals. He answered that it would cost more to install them and maintain the databases than to have enough reserve cash to cover fraud. So I guess we must continue to use PINs for a while longer.
NFC seems to be a great technology, but it must be improved to allow a long-range radio communication between devices. For this, you will need to make some investments, like buying Coaxicom products, mobile devices, chips and so on to build a stronger wireless connectivity technology.
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