RIP wallets, long live the phone: Bradlow

RIP wallets, long live the phone: Bradlow

Summary: Telstra's chief technology officer Dr Hugh Bradlow has said that the days of the plastic credit card are numbered.


Telstra's chief technology officer Dr Hugh Bradlow has said that the days of the plastic credit card are numbered.


Members of the AIIA industry panel on mobility innovation in financial services. (Credit: Luke Hopewell/ZDNet Australia)

"The mobile phone is rapidly turning into our wallet and our keys with technology like near-field communication," Bradlow said, speaking from an Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) panel on mobility innovation in financial services yesterday.

Near-field communication facilitates the transmission of data over a range of approximately 10cm. A chip in a mobile phone interacts with a proximity card reader on any compatible device, — a technology that serves as a drawcard for mobile payments.

"[Smartphones] can detect proximity, are always online connected — if you're on the right network — and it's able to infer the context of your location. That means you can do richer financial transactions than you could with a credit card," Bradlow said.

"Because the phone is location aware and can do two out of three factors of authentication already, you can use it as an authentication device, and replace all the things you have in your wallet, even your EFTPOS card."

Bradlow said that in the future, the only item people will need with them is their smartphone.

"Nokia did a study a few years ago, and asked what you never leave home without. The answer as you would expect is their keys but then came their mobile phone. When you repeat that question in 10 years, the answer will just be mobile phones."

Topics: Mobility, Apple, iPhone, Telcos, Telstra

Luke Hopewell

About Luke Hopewell

A fresh recruit onto the tech journalism battlefield, Luke Hopewell is eager to see some action. After a tour of duty in the belly of the Telstra beast, he is keen to report big stories on the enterprise beat. Drawing on past experience in radio, print and magazine, he plans to ask all the tough questions you want answered.

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  • I don't carry a portable microwave oven on my person, so it will have to be a non-RF solution for me.
  • Hugh Bradlow would say that, wouldn't he? Perhaps twenty years ago he was one of the people touting the paperless office, and ten years ago the online refrigerator.

    And in another ten years we'll all go to work in our mobile-controlled jetpacks?
  • How safe is continuous RF radiation (at least 4W) on human nervous tissue from a mobile Telephone, I feel that untill we have solved this problem it is useless speculating further on this method.