Smart wallets are the new rising tide, and are well worth the money, but what makes a smart wallet smart? That depends on the wallet, but the most common feature is RFID blocking. Most offer an easy way to get at your credit or debit card alongside other features such as having a mobile battery or GPS tracking ability.
What is RFID?
RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification, which uses short-distance electro-magnetics to transmit data. It was created for warehouse inventory work before evolving to be used in passports, credit cards, and ID cards. They’re used in the same way as Apple or Samsung Pay, essentially just saving you the hassle of inserting your credit card into the card reader by letting you wave it in front of the reader or tapping it onto it. The problem is that RFID isn’t encrypted, meaning it transmits your data into the world and can be easily intercepted and read.
So my smart wallet is RFID blocking?
A feature of smart wallets is their RFID blocking capability, which means they’re able to block an RFID skimmer from scanning your credit or debit card, or even your ID. This keeps your personal and financial information safe and secure, while looking good and having a host of other features.
What other features do smart wallets have?
The phrase “smart wallet” is a bit wide, as almost every wallet manufacturer uses the phrase for every wallet that isn’t just a leather bifold or trifold. If it’s any kind of other wallet, it’s been labeled a smart wallet.
In terms of features, most smart wallets have some kind of integrated GPS tracking capability. By connecting your phone to your wallet via Bluetooth, you can track your wallet up to 200 feet on average. The average smart wallet also makes some kind of noise when you get too far away from it, which can be handy, but only if you’re listening or otherwise aware that it’s happening.
Another feature in some smart wallets is the presence of a mobile battery of some kind, either built into the wallet or offered in combination with the wallet itself to charge the integrated GPS. While these batteries may not be the largest, they’ll work in a pinch to top off your phone or even just keep your phone from dying.
Why should I get one?
While many of these features sound like overkill (I mean having a button to push out your credit cards sounds handy, but is it really that much of a hassle to fish one out at the Starbucks on the corner?) a smart wallet can offer other benefits that, depending on your situation, could be well worth the higher price point.
Most rfid wallets, which may seem unnecessary, have a feature that requires no effort from whoever’s carrying it. It won’t impact your day-to-day life negatively, won’t damage any of your credit or debit cards, and will keep your personal and financial data safe from anyone trying to make some money off your data. They block RFID scanners, which can keep your data out of the hands of criminals.
A GPS tracking wallet sounds like something straight out of a James Bond movie, but the benefits of always knowing where your wallet is without having to tear your house apart can’t be understated. Everyone’s had at least one occasion where they can’t find their wallet, and a tracking wallet can beep to help you find it, much like using a friend’s phone to call yours while you’re looking for it, and the ability to find it anywhere means if it does get stolen, you can track it down with no issue.
Smart wallets may cost more than regular, traditional wallet, but the additional features that come with the higher price are well worth it, and a good smart wallet will prove itself in no time.