With Apple Pay's launch likely just days or perhaps weeks away, "card tech" startup Plastc today announced its plans for its new digital wallet, replacing credit cards, debit cards, RFID access cards, gift cards and more. On paper, Plastc promises to go above and beyond competitor Coin, offering an expanded set of features that are better optimized for today's new wireless mobile payment future.

remote_security_card
The Plastc card allows users to store up to 20 cards or barcodes on its internal flash memory and ships with a companion iOS Wallet app that lets users manage the card. Plastc looks like a standard 0.8-millimeter-thick credit card, but it features an eInk touchscreen display for selecting stored content, Bluetooth to connect to an iPhone, rewritable RFID, and support for payment technologies such as magnetic stripes, NFC, and EMV chip and PIN. It also includes wireless induction charging and a remote wipe feature that lets users erase the card in case of theft or loss.

Though its feature set is impressive, Plastc will be competing with the upcoming Apple Pay, which is scheduled to launch this month with broad industry support. Apple has worked on Apple Pay with all three major credit card companies, several major banks, and a variety of retail partners such as Macy's, Walgreens, McDonald's, Whole Foods, Disney and others.

plastc-card
Despite this competitive threat, Plastc COO Ryan Marquis told The Verge that he is optimistic about the company's future.

"Ultimately a cloud-based digital wallet will be the winner," says Marquis, "but with our technology, we can allow consumers to build a digital wallet using a form factor that they’re used to today." Marquis says there are still many use cases where we need physical cards like subway ticketing machines, ATMs, and gas pumps. "I will utilize Apple Pay because it’s simple and easy, but there are so many use cases in our world where I’m still going to need a physical card," he says. "There are so many things that point-of-sale machines just aren’t ready for yet."

Similar to Coin which was announced last year and has yet to ship, Plastc is available now only for pre-order. The card costs $155 and is expected to ship next summer.

Top Rated Comments

Zxxv Avatar
100 months ago
It has to be free. Sell it to banks not end users.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gleepskip Avatar
100 months ago
I suppose this could help in filling the gap while we wait for Apple Pay ubiquity, but Plastic's future will be short-lived.

Edit: It's too bad because, a few years ago, a cool card like this would have been drool-worthy.
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
DTphonehome Avatar
100 months ago
It's going to be a very long time before NFC-based readers are ubiquitous enough to replace standard magnetic stripe and chip-based credit card readers. This product definitely has a use for the foreseeable future. However, the $155 price tag seems a bit steep.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
r-m Avatar
100 months ago
This is way better than Apple Pay. Especially in the UK.
Looks like this card works with chip n pin, and nfc. Whilst apple pay has it's slow rollout, this card can already be used in many many place and works just like I want out of an all-in-one solution!
Apple pay's current plans won't match this for me. Again, especially in the UK.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sailmac Avatar
100 months ago
Developed mild interest as I read along. Then got to the $155 price and felt the whole thing deflate like a cartoon balloon.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
techwhiz Avatar
100 months ago
The reason why it is sold to consumers is banks turned down the concept of programmable credit cards over ten years ago. I see this as a loser for several reasons.

1) Confiscations. It now becomes now a technical effort instead of the classic "grab and cut" in front of the customer that has been around since the 70's.
Never seen it and this is not really relavent.


2) ID theft. This makes credit card cloning way too easy.
How so? It's no different than now.


3) Loss. You loose this card and you loose multiple credit cards at once.
Like losing your wallet???

4) Data integrity. Since it is programmable, what are the chances of data corruption in the Flash memory inside the card? What about card bending, static electricity, humidity and electromagnetic interference? The simple mangetic strip card has been around for almost fourty years because it passes all these stress tests.
Flash corruption? Flash can/does have ECC.
Static electricity? Not a problem as long as you design for ESD resistance.
Humidity? Hermetically seal it. There are no user serviceable parts inside.

None of what you outline has to be an issue in a well thought out design.

5) Replacement. Here the cost is higher. Most banks will send you a new credit card overnight just so you can keep on spending. This company? What is their replacement policy?
You lose it, you pay to replace. It's not like a plastic slab with a magnetic strip that costs all of $.30 to produce.

6) Branding. Banks love to have custom and colorful artwork on their cards. This card reduces the corporate image of the company to an ePaper gray scale display.
And? What's that got to do with my wallet?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 13 Always On Feature

iPhone 14 Pro Screen Refresh Rate Upgrade Could Allow for Always-On Display

Tuesday May 24, 2022 7:23 am PDT by
Last year's iPhone 13 Pro models were the first of Apple's smartphones to come with 120Hz ProMotion displays, and while the two iPhone 14 Pro models will continue to feature the technology, their screens could well boast expanded refresh rate variability this time round. To bring ProMotion displays to the ‌iPhone 13 Pro models‌, Apple adopted LTPO panel technology with variable refresh...
iPhone 14 Pro Purple Front and Back MacRumors Exclusive

iPhone 14 Pro Renders Highlight Multiple Design Changes

Wednesday May 25, 2022 8:56 am PDT by
Leaker Jon Prosser today shared ostensibly accurate renders of the iPhone 14 Pro, providing the most accurate look yet at what the device could look like when it launches later this year. In the latest video on YouTube channel Front Page Tech, Prosser revealed renders of the iPhone 14 Pro made by Apple concept graphic designer Ian Zelbo, highlighting a range of specific design changes...
iPhone 14 Purple Lineup Feature

Will the iPhone 14 Be a Disappointment?

Saturday May 21, 2022 9:00 am PDT by
With around four months to go before Apple is expected to unveil the iPhone 14 lineup, the overwhelming majority of rumors related to the new devices so far have focused on the iPhone 14 Pro, rather than the standard iPhone 14 – leading to questions about how different the iPhone 14 will actually be from its predecessor, the iPhone 13. The iPhone 14 Pro and iPhone 14 Pro Max are expected...
iPhone 13 Face ID

'High-End' iPhone 14 Front-Facing Camera to Cost Apple Three Times More

Monday May 23, 2022 7:05 am PDT by
The iPhone 14 will feature a more expensive "high-end" front-facing camera with autofocus, partly made in South Korea for the first time, ET News reports. Apple reportedly ousted a Chinese candidate to choose LG Innotek, a South Korean company, to supply the iPhone 14's front-facing camera alongside Japan's Sharp. The company is said to have originally planned to switch to LG for the iPhone...
apple wwdc 2022

Apple Shares WWDC 2022 Schedule, Keynote to Take Place June 6 at 10:00 a.m PT

Tuesday May 24, 2022 9:06 am PDT by
Apple today confirmed that the keynote event for the Worldwide Developers Conference will begin at 10:00 a.m. Pacific Time on June 6, the first day of WWDC. The keynote will be an online-only event, though a select number of developers have been invited to the Apple Park campus for a viewing event. In addition to confirming the keynote date and time, Apple has shared the full WWDC 2022...
2022 Apple Watch Pride Edition Bands

Apple Announces 2022 Pride Edition Watch Bands and Watch Face

Tuesday May 24, 2022 6:24 am PDT by
Apple today announced new Pride bands for the Apple Watch, with new Pride Edition Sport Loop and Pride Edition Nike Sport Loop options available. The new Pride Edition bands are available to order today for $49 on Apple.com and in the Apple Store app, and will be available at Apple Store locations starting May 26. The Pride Edition Nike Sport Loop is also coming soon to Nike.com. This...