Back during CES Dynamics showed off the Wallet Card, a smart connected credit card that came with a bunch of features most people didn't even think they wanted. Those same cards are back little over a month later at MWC, except now it's been revealed the cards will have two-way communication so the banks can send you messages and make sure everything's alright.
That makes it sound a bit more stalkery than it is, since the whole point is to make it more convenient for banks to verify it's actually you making your purchases. The bank will send a message to the mini display on the card, and you can respond almost immediately. No more having your card denied and the bank ring you half an hour later.
Dynamics also mentioned that same system can also be used when you're shopping somewhere with a loyalty card scheme, asking you whether you'd like to download it to the card and shave a few millimetres of thickness from your wallet. Other possibilities included being able to extend your credit limit, viewing coupons, instant customer feedback, and offers to upgrade your card to more advanced features.
As we reported last month, the cards will also let users store more than one credit or debit card on a single slab of electronic plastic thanks to re-writable magnetic strips, with the screen throwing up the details for the appropriate card when you're planning on using it. The mobile connectivity also means you can get new card details beamed down at you instantly, should your details be compromised without you actually losing the physical card. If you do lose the physical card, fulfilment programmes have been designed to get a replacement out within a few hours.
There are some concerns people might have, particularly in terms of security and battery. The good news is that the battery is capable of continually charging itself up, so you're never going to unexpectedly find yourself without power to buy something. They wouldn't divulge how the battery recharges (it's a trade secret apparently), but they likened it to kinetic-powered watches - though they did stress that this isn't exactly an accurate description of the mechanics. Still the good news is that it's continually topping itself up.
As for security, Dynamics promised that the cards themselves have the same level of security as online banking and regular credit/debit cards. All communication is encrypted, and the only way to intercept anything is to have the exact encryption keys that are kept under lock and key at all times. In fact, they said it's easier just to steal someone's credit card.
Eight credit card companies and banks have signed up for the Wallet Card in the US, and an international expansion is planned - but for now there aren't any solid plans
Gizmodo UK is in Barcelona at MWC! Keep up with all the latest announcements from the show floor right here.