The huge CES (formerly the Consumer Electronics Show) expo is underway in Las Vegas, and out of it are coming the latest whiz-bang developments in payment technology. Among them: connected cars that enable the driver to pay for gas with a Visa card and authenticate the transaction with an iris scan through a look into the rear-view mirror.
Then there’s the multi-function, instantly issued payment card from Dynamics Inc. that can receive messages from the card issuer.
The connected car announcement comes from Zeeland, Mich.-based Gentex Corp., a manufacturer of automatically dimming rear-view mirrors and electronics for the auto industry, and Visa Inc. Gentex technology is being paired with the Visa Token Service—the payment network’s digital system that replaces card numbers with one-time digital strings useless to fraudsters. Thus equipped, a vehicle could initiate a payment at a fuel pump from the car’s dashboard screen by touching a pre-loaded Visa card identifier.
“It’s all built off the Visa Token Service,” Avin Arumugam, Visa’s senior vice president for the Internet of Things, tells Digital Transactions News.
Authentication is biometric, coming from a scan of the authorized driver’s eye when the driver looks at the rear-view mirror. The rear-view mirror houses near-infrared emitters, an iris-scanning camera, and provides information to the vehicle’s computer system, according to Gentex.
Gentex is working with unidentified auto manufacturers to bring the service to market. In addition to authenticating payments, a glance in the mirror could enable the authorized user to personalize seat positions, heating and air conditioning settings, radio and music playlists, and other functions.
Regarding automobiles, “It used to be all about styling,” Arumugam says. “That’s kind of taking a back seat to all the different connected features that consumers are asking for.”
Meanwhile, Pittsburgh-based Dynamics announced its Wallet Card, which provides access to multiple credit, debit, prepaid or loyalty cards with the tap of a button. The battery-powered card has a 65,000-pixel display and a cell-phone chip and antenna, enabling the issuer to send messages such as balance information to the cardholder. Dynamics also said in a news release that the card can receive digital coupons. The card can be instantly issued in bank branches or at events.
Among Dynamics’ partners for the card are Visa, Mastercard Inc., and JCB. In late 2014, Mastercard participated in a $70 million funding round for Dynamics, which has been working on iterations of enhanced payment cards at least since 2010.