Payment technology implanted in your HAND becomes first that can be used worldwide
A Lublin man’s firm has come up with the world’s first payment implant that can be used globally.
Using bio-polymers and the same short-range NFC (near-field communication) technology as contactless payment cards, the implant from Polish-British startup Walletmor can be sewn into the hand and used to make payments at all contactless terminals around the world that accept payments with standard cards from organizations such as Mastercard or Visa .
CEO Wojtek Paprota told TFN: “So far, no one has manufactured such an implant that is accepted worldwide.
“The RFID and NFC implants have been available on the market since 2013, but none of them has had the contactless payments feature.
“However, you can find videos on the internet that show the payments being processed with the implants but it is a transaction done within the internal Venmo system where both customer and merchant have the account on Venmo.
“In Walletmor, we are talking about real payments and the commercially available implants, not custom-made.”
Working with an iCard account accessed through the app and licensed by the Electronic Money Institution and supervised by the EU, once the account is topped up users find a specialist to implant the chip, with Walletmor providing a list of approved specialist which includes over 40 options across 11 countries.
The company is now in dialogue with large industry players who are keen to see how demand develops for the implants.
Like many of the payment innovations over the last ten years the move away from coins and notes is gathering pace.
Paprota told TFN: “Today, the only feature of Walletmor payment implants is contactless payments. We are tirelessly working on upgrading it with other features such as opening doors, using it as authorization tokens or ID badges.
“Basically, every NFC feature can be installed on the implant, but we are still developing the whole ecosystem to gather all those things.”
Currently the iCard account is only available in European countries but the company is working on opening up in new markets and could be available around the globe within the next two years.
“Today this pin size implant is a validated replacement of the bulky wallet but it is only the first step.
“Ultimately our implants will merge your physical and digital identity and it is closer than you think.”
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