Electronics

Swyp aims to replace all your plastic cards with one that's electronic

Swyp aims to replace all your ...
Swyp aims to slim down your wallet by condensing up to 25 cards into one
Swyp aims to slim down your wallet by condensing up to 25 cards into one
View 4 Images
Swyp allows users to switch between stored cards using the physical scroll buttons, with the built-in display showing information for the chosen payment method
1/4
Swyp allows users to switch between stored cards using the physical scroll buttons, with the built-in display showing information for the chosen payment method
According to the company, Swyp is actually more secure than conventional plastic, as it locks when it moves out of range of a Bluetooth-paired smartphone
2/4
According to the company, Swyp is actually more secure than conventional plastic, as it locks when it moves out of range of a Bluetooth-paired smartphone
The card is Chip and PIN ready, though the functionality won’t be available until it’s enabled via a future firmware update
3/4
The card is Chip and PIN ready, though the functionality won’t be available until it’s enabled via a future firmware update
Swyp aims to slim down your wallet by condensing up to 25 cards into one
4/4
Swyp aims to slim down your wallet by condensing up to 25 cards into one
View gallery - 4 images

Over the last couple of years we’ve seen a number high-tech cards that aim to slim down your wallet, all offering pretty similar functionality. The Swyp Card is the latest to make a bid for your hard-earned cash, promising to condense your wallet into a single metal card that stores info from debit, credit, loyalty and gift cards.

Swyp holds onto the classic card form factor and allows users to switch between stored cards using physical scroll buttons, with a built-in display showing information for the chosen payment method. New cards are registered by swiping them through a card reader that plugs into the headphone port on a user’s smartphone running a companion iOS/Android app.

It’ll work with any magnetic strip-based card, including debit, credit, gift and loyalty cards. Swyp's built-in battery is rechargeable (there’s a charger in the box) and will reportedly run for around two years before needing a top up.

Swyp allows users to switch between stored cards using the physical scroll buttons, with the built-in display showing information for the chosen payment method
Swyp allows users to switch between stored cards using the physical scroll buttons, with the built-in display showing information for the chosen payment method

According to the company, Swyp is actually more secure than conventional plastic, as it locks when it moves out of range of a Bluetooth-paired smartphone. If you leave your phone at home or it runs out of charge, you’ll still be able to make payments by inputting a security pin on the Swyp card itself.

Though scrolling through card information stored in one place is certainly less of an inconvenience than searching through a packed wallet, Swyp aims to make things easier still by predicting which payment method you’ll need for the next transaction. Users can also take snaps of paper receipts using their smartphone, storing them via the companion app to help keep track of expenses.

The card is Chip and PIN ready, though the functionality won’t be available until it’s enabled via a future firmware update. The company plans to enable the feature once US credit card networks make a definitive transition to the EMV standard. There are also plans to add NFC support with future hardware revisions, but the tech isn’t included in the version that’s up for pre-order now.

According to the company, Swyp is actually more secure than conventional plastic, as it locks when it moves out of range of a Bluetooth-paired smartphone
According to the company, Swyp is actually more secure than conventional plastic, as it locks when it moves out of range of a Bluetooth-paired smartphone

Perhaps the biggest advantage that Swyp has over the competition is the amount of space it provides to store card information. Rivals Coin and Plastc can only store eight and 20 cards respectively, while Swyp can hold onto the info of up to 25, which should be more than enough for the majority of users. The security-centric Wocket smashes that number though, offering to store up to 10,000 cards, but its functionality is more complex than its competitors, and it’s currently being sold on an invite-only basis.

Swyp looks to be one of the more affordable smart cards out there, too, coming in at an introductory price of US$49 (which will rise to $99 when the product hits retail in Q3 2015).

You can check out the video below for a closer look at the Swyp.

Source: Swyp

SWYP Card: Smart, Secure, Simple

View gallery - 4 images
13 comments
Daniel Dawson
What would be the impact of this technology to personal security?
S Michael
Listen to me folks... Any card that uses the magnetic stripe on the back is a security risk. The magnetic stripe is so bad that Europe wont accept them you have to have a PIN and Chip. The magnetic stripe is the most unsecure method of card use. Don't waist you money on this device.
Gadgeteer
Too little, too late. At this point, it looks like Apple Pay is going to be the 800-pound gorilla in the room in this field, thanks to its security and the cooperation of card issuers. Other smaller NFC payment systems will compete with it. Swyp is basically trying to hold onto a technology that will be on its way out in the near future.
Dax Wagner
This is definitely one technology that I don't want to be an early adopter on. Just think of how wrong it can go.
Derek Howe
S Michael, The US is finally just starting to switch over to the pin & chip style cards, but no method is completely safe.
Gadgeteer is dead on, whether it be by Apple or someone else, paying for something by using your phone is where it's headed. A close comparison would be: Current plastic cards are like dvd's, and pin & chip cards are like blu-rays. Yes, their better but they fill interim gap. Movies have moved from physical discs, to digital downloads/streaming. Much like physical cards are moving to digital transactions using your phone, since it's something you always have on you.
In other words, "swyp" is DOA.
Bill Ham
@Gadgeteer. Visa is developing an app for your smartphone. They will use the gps to verify you are physically at the same location as your card Still not as secure ad pin and chip, but better than nothing
Arno Huyssteen
I'd say, unless you have chip&pin enabled from day one, you are dead in the water over here in Europe. Gone are the old-school days of purchases with a swipe and signature! And competitors like PLASTC is already in the space... I also agree that if I had a choice I'd use Apple Pay directly, but seeing that Apple has not opened it on Europe, I have pre-ordered PLASTC.
piperTom
Gadgeteer (above) nailed it. However, I take issue with "smaller NFC payment systems". If Google and Amex qualify as "smaller", you must live in a very elevated world.
Tom Swift
I have this already, it's called an iphone with apple pay. Plus it uses fingerprint id rather than a pin.
Brent Tucker
Apple pay might take on the bank and credit cards but I don't see it replacing every gift, loyalty, discount or membership card. I have 1 EFTPOS card and 2 credit cards but over a dozen other cards that live in my desk, wallet and glove box but I always never seen to have the right one at the right time. This is where I see this tech really making an improvement.