Powered Smart Card: The Technology to Which the Future Belongs


  • Published On : Sep 04, 2020

The BFSI sector is looking upon microcontroller-based powered smart cards as a promising means of facilitating intelligent communication as they have on-card dynamic data processing abilities and ascertain more security in comparison with memory-based smart cards. Also, the residential offices are asking for reliable and secure payment transactions, which is expected to drive the powered smart cards market further.

Covid-19 to Push Cashless Transaction

The outbreak of Covid-19 has compelled people to maintain social distancing. This has, in turn, pressed for cashless transaction. Even the small retailers are going cashless now. They have started to realize the fact that powered smart cards promulgate convenience and ensure of hygiene (as cross-contamination gets averted due to no currency getting passed from one hand to another), apart from speedy and trusted transactions.

The hospitality sectors and governments are also promoting digital payment as a small effort to curb the spread of Covid-19. For instance – The Reserve Bank of India did urge Indians way back in Mar 2020 to go for cashless transactions. Likewise, close to 75% of Indians switched over to digital payments from Apr 2020. This ongoing trend is expected to create greater strides for powered smart cards market between 2020 and 2030.

Dual-Interface Smart Cards to Rule the Roost?

Dual-interface smart cards do enable compatibility with any POS terminal or card reader. The name “dual-interface” implies that both – contactless and contact interfaces are possible. The cards come across as integrations with EMV chips and RFID technology. The speedy payment processing lessens customers’ waiting time. Along these lines, CPI Card Group, Inc., in Jan 2020, did come up with patented encased tungsten & steel cards featuring dual-interface EMV technology. The other players like NXP Semiconductor are emphasizing on development of an efficient chip to manufacture dual-interface cards. These measures by the key players are bound to take the powered smart cards market by storm from 2020 to 2030.

Donning the “Innovators’ Cap”

The UICC (Universal Integrated Circuit Card) is amongst the new-generation technologies that has been optimized for new-fangled standards pertaining to wireless network. It does offer numerous enhanced capabilities that include enhanced support regarding IP addressing and multiple applications. Dual-interface smart cards do suffice these norms.

Fast adoption of eSIM coupled with technological upgradations in IoT/M2M are catalysing the powered smart cards market in the US. Research states that the year 2019 witnessed an influx of over 10 Bn secure eSIMs in the US alone. Incorporating card lets phones store consumer account information and payment application all the more securely.

Europe to Lead from the Front?

Europe held the largest market share in 2019 and the scenario is expected to continue with even going forward. This could be attributed to the fact that in the UK, self-service functionality is being appreciated by the consumers as it lessens time and enables hassle-free travel. Plus, the UK market is into adoption of contactless cards as an ecologically-friendly alternative to paper ticketing in London’s National Rail System. Moreover, the “Oyster Card Payment” method has been implemented by the city with respect to public transport to enable simpler, hassle-free, and faster travel options.

In addition to this, hoards of transport players are into inclusion of advanced features for simplifying the customers’ journey. For example – The SWR (South Western Railway), in Sep 2019, announced launching Tap2Go account-based smart card ticketing. The SWR states that it could be used even out of London. The cards help in calculating apt fare and let customers have their cards abreast with the other tickets (say – season tickets) as well.

Joining Hands with Technological Upgradations to Grab a Larger Mindshare of Customers

The key players are looking forward to integration of advanced technologies into the cards for ensuring a higher degree of customers’ satisfaction. On these grounds, CardLogix Corporation, in Jun 2019, did introduce an IDBX (Instant Biometric Smart Card Issuance System) for streamlining multi-app biometric enrolment feature. The card also helps in remote access to desktop. The solution does enable capturing face, iris, fingerprints, biographic information, and signature, and then encode, verify, and print data to contactless or contact card.

The global powered smart cards market is poised to witness a CAGR of 9.2% from 2020 to 2030.

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