The once common inquiry of “paper or plastic” is often associated with grocery story checkouts, when customers would be asked which type of bag they prefer. The distinction also applied to the payment method of either cash or credit.
Nowadays, a store clerk might have reason to ask “paper, plastic, or nothing?” as contactless payments become a new norm in America. Not far off may be the day when there are no more human beings working checkout lines, but it remains on the horizon at least for the time being.
Earlier this week, Discover announced it will follow the likes of competitors Visa and Mastercard in the new trend of connecting payment methods to wearable technology and other devices like smartwatches and fitness trackers, according to an article this week from Digital Transactions. It appears efforts necessary for maintaining an active lifestyle continue to require more and more conscientious choice, as normal activities demand less and less physical movement.
Story author Jim Daly detailed the specifics in the announcement, writing:
Holders of Discover cards can now add their cards to the Garmin Pay mobile wallet for Garmin International Inc. wearable devices to make contactless payments, Discover Financial Services and Garmin announced Monday.
Today’s announcement means that Discover is joining Visa and Mastercard as a payment option for Garmin Pay wallet users. Once a payment card is added to Garmin’s virtual wallet, which can be done through the Garmin Connect mobile app, users can tap and pay with a few touches on the device.
Garmin Pay runs on FitPay technology from Nxt-ID Inc.’s Fit Pay Inc. subsidiary, including near-field communication for contactless transactions. General-purpose mobile wallets for smart phones such as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay also use NFC. Most U.S. merchant locations now have the capability to accept NFC at the point-of-sale, though many merchants haven’t yet activated the feature. …
“Consumers are constantly on the go and our goal is to make it as simple and seamless as possible for our cardmembers to pay with their Discover card, including on IoT [Internet of Things] and wearable devices,” Shaida Lynch, vice president of e-business at Riverwoods, Ill.-based Discover, said in a news release. “Now someone can be out on a jog or running errands and the ability to pay with Discover from their Garmin watch is just a quick tap away.”
Credit card companies constantly push incentives to attract potential customers. Whether it be frequent flyer miles or cash back, the competition for best registration deals and loyalty benefits shows no signs of slowing down.
Now, those who want to stay on the move without stopping to withdraw a physical payment from their wallets have the option of skipping that step. After all, less time spent making non-virtual payments means more time for workouts, right?
To read Daly’s full writeup, click here.