Your Contactless Digital Wallet How-To

While digital wallets may seem like a recent concept, the first one was actually launched in 1997 by Coca Cola as a way to purchase vending machine soda via text message. If you weren’t in Helsinki back then, you may have missed it—but luckily, digital wallets are widely available today, making contactless purchasing safer and more convenient than ever. In fact, the number of digital wallet users is expected to surpass 1 billion in 2020.

Regardless of its popularity, digital wallets can still seem confusing to understand and intimidating to use. But they’re not, really. Here’s everything you need to know about this easy and safe way to make purchases using your FCB Texas debit and/or credit card and your smartphone.

What is a digital wallet?

A digital wallet is simply a digital version of your physical credit/debit cards that are stored in a secure app on your smartphone. This enables you to use your smartphone when making point-of-sale, in-person payments instead of swiping or inserting your physical cards.

What app do I need?

Depending on your phone, you can use the Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay app, all of which are free.

How do I set it up?

Once you’ve downloaded the app, adding your debit or credit cards to your digital wallet is a snap—literally! Simply open your digital wallet, navigate to the “cards” screen, select the option to add a card, then take a picture of your physical card when prompted and you’re ready to shop.

Is it safe to use?

Digital wallets do not store your personal information or your account number. Instead, they use a process called tokenization that replaces your 16-digit card number with a unique device account number (DAN) so your actual card information can’t be stolen, even if your phone is.

Where can I use it?

More and more businesses are accepting digital wallets as payment forms, but it’s important to confirm whether the store you’re visiting does before you leave your real wallet at home. Most stores will have signage with the contactless symbol or Apple/Google/Samsung Pay app icons on or near their payment terminal, but if you’re unsure, simply ask the cashier.

How do I use it?

The best part of digital wallets is that they’re incredibly easy to use and don’t require you to hand your card to the cashier or insert it into a machine many others have used. Simply hold your phone close to the payment terminal and the near-field communication (NFC) technology that facilitates contactless transactions will recognize your payment and process it normally. Many smartwatches even support digital wallets, so you can leave your phone in your pocket and hold your wrist over the terminal instead.

Are there any other benefits?

While benefits may vary by app and by business, many offer incentives to pay using the app, which can include discounts, loyalty points, and coupons. Once you download your digital wallet, you may get notifications informing you of potential perks, or you can check by opening the app.

Now that you know how easy, secure, and convenient digital wallets are, it’s time for you to experience fast, contactless purchasing for yourself. Get started with FCB Texas now.