How do you see the long-term future of smart cards and hard currency? Will we ever become a cashless society and, if so, which country is likely to be the first?
The long-term success of smart cards depends heavily on two factors, the first being that there have to be sufficient service providers which are willing to accept payments via smart technologies. The second factor being that consumers have to be interested and receptive towards the idea of using these technologies to make payments, instead of using hard currency.
At present, consumers, in many cases, must meet a minimum amount before being able to make payments with credit cards due to the commissions that are implemented. However, the idea of an electronic purse, for example, NETS FlashPay and iNETS in Singapore, means that consumers now can make payments for smaller amounts using their cards. However, these technologies are still in their infant stages, and have yet to reach their full potential.
With further developments in smart technologies, we believe that less and less cash will be used for payments, but do not foresee a cashless society in the near future.
Topics including smart cards, digital identification, recognition and certification, RF tagging, smart labels and RFID will be discussed on 16 18 March 2010 in Hong Kong when Cartes in Asia runs the AsiaWorld - Expo.
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