That’s right! We soon will be able to pay for stuff without the need of a wallet — just bring your cellphone along. The technology that makes this possible is a new wireless technology called NFC (Near Field Communication). The NFC chip encrypts your credit card information using short distance radio waves that transmits the data directly to the register. What makes this different than RFID is that it is a two-way technology. The whole footprint of the chip (both transmitter and receiver) measures only five-millimeters. The chip can also receive other data like receipts or coupons.
The best part about this technology is that you won’t have to get a new cellphone. Yup! If you already own a Palm or Windows Mobile phone you will be able to use this new technology by just installing the mini-SD adapter from SanDisk. Which should be available March 2007 for about $80.