Visa Inc. and U.S. Bancorp are testing consumer preferences for an alternative electronic payment device. Known as the Visa Micro Tag, it is the smallest Visa payWave-enabled device available. The tag can be attached to a key ring and allows Micro Tag holders to simply wave and pay.
U.S. Bancorp plans to distribute more than 4,000 prepaid Visa Micro Tags to employees this month to collect feedback on design, functionality and ease-of-use of the devices. Employees across the country will receive the U.S. Bank Visa Micro Tag which is tied to a prepaid U.S. Bank Visa gift account. The tag can be used to make purchases anywhere Visa payWave is accepted.
The Micro Tag was first introduced last year and can be used with credit, debit or prepaid accounts.
“Consumers today want access to their financial accounts quickly and securely,” said Pat Coll, executive vice president of U.S. Bank Retail Payment Solutions. “New payment devices, such as the Visa Micro Tag, allow consumers to conveniently use electronic forms of payment for small ticket purchases, such as concessions at a sporting event, a soda at a vending machine, or a cup of coffee, while also providing an added layer of security.”
A Visa account number is not required to be embossed or printed on the device. This provides an additional layer of security for consumers who choose to carry their tags in visible ways, such as on a keychain.
Visa Micro Tags can also be personalized, like standard credit/debit cards are today. The tag can also can be manufactured in a variety of shapes and sizes from flat to three-dimensional. The Micro Tags were manufactured by Giesecke & Devrient (G&D) using the MicroPass chip from INSIDE Contactless. The Visa Micro Tag is not available in Europe.