Visa develops a physical ring payments prototype for athletes to make payments in Rio Olympics
Visa has stepped up their game with an advanced form of making payments – and it comes in the form of a ring. Visa plans to share this ring with 45 Olympic athletes during the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
Simplistically designed, the ring contains a microchip made by digital security company Gemalto, and it has a NFC-enabled antenna. The athletes can make payments by tapping or waving the ring in close proximity to a NFC-capable payments terminal, reports wbir.com
At a promotional event in Manhattan headlined by US Olympic fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad, Visa unveiled their new product, which is aimed at changing the way transactions work. American Decathlete Ashton Eaton specifically told Visa he wanted something that he could just integrate into his daily routine and forget about, reports Engadget.
Wallets and standard wearables such as the Apple Watch were starting to become highly irritating when it came to changing in and out of his uniform. This ring is not only designed to be inconspicuous but also water resistant up to 50 meters, without needing to be charged. The ring draws its power from the payment terminal- just enough to enable the transaction to take place. It’s on par with using Apple Pay or Android Pay, only difference being it doesn’t consume nearly as much data and it’s on par with swiping a card. Going a step further, Visa also provides a card with the ring, for those instances when contactless pay isn’t available.
If you’re worried about the ring going missing, fret not. In the situation of the ring getting lost, the payment band can be deactivated from a smartphone, and thieves who find it won’t be able to get anything useful out of it.
Sadly, as of now, the ring is a prototype and won’t be available to the general public in time for the Rio olympics. The Olympic Village is meant to act as a testing ground to find out how well this ring will actually perform when it’s out there, on the field.
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