NXP Semiconductors has unveiled a new digital wallet system designed for easy integration into a range of potential hardware products.
Developed in collaboration with Mastercard and Visa, the mWallet 2GO solution features NFC for contactless payments, a comprehensive Secure Element system, and functionality with the Mastercard Digital Enablement Service and Visa Token Service platforms. It also features support for MIFARE 2GO, a digital version of the MIFARE payment system used on transit networks. The idea is to offer OEMs a comprehensive digital wallet solution that essentially operates on a plug-and-play basis.
To that end, German luxury accessories maker Montblanc has integrated mWallet 2GO into its TWIN watch strap, which is designed to feature a standard timepiece on the top of the wearer’s wrist, and a small digital display on the bottom. That piece of hardware is also the home of NXP’s technology, and can process payments at Visa and Mastercard terminals with the flick of a wrist, supporting up to five credit cards via a companion app.
It could be a sign of things to come. While there is growing enthusiasm for smartwatches like the Apple Watch, there is also a persistent tension between the novel uses of such devices and the classic design of standard watches; by combining smartwatch functionality with classic timepiece aesthetics, Montblanc may be pointing the way to the future of the wristwatch; and NXP’s technology is right alongside at the vanguard.