NXT-ID’s Wocket is an all-in-one payments solution that can truly replace your wallet

There’s no shortage of companies aiming to consolidate your plastic methods of payment, and they’re all angling to accomplish the same goal: eliminate the annoyance of carrying around dozens of credit, debit, loyalty, and gift cards in an overstuffed wallet.

The only problem? Most have struggled to make it to market. Perhaps the best-known example, Coin, won’t fulfill all of its orders until Q1 of this year, and another, Swype, is limiting pre-orders. But there’s one startup, NXT-ID, that’s miraculously managed to avoid the fate of its competitors and deliver its Wocket payment solution to virtual store shelves.

NXT-ID is not exactly an emergent brand — it unveiled the Wocket in April of last year — but the company has managed to stay true to its original vision with the latest iteration of its wallet, an impressive feat in a space as volatile as the mobile payment sector.

Wocket-smart-wallet
Kyle Wiggers/Digital Trends
Kyle Wiggers/Digital Trends

The Wocket’s basically made up of two components: a physical, removable credit card, and a boxy, rectangular card selector into which the aforementioned credit card fits. The card selector, which sports a touchscreen e-ink display and runs on a standard coin battery, is where the magic happens: you select a saved virtual card to assign to the physical card, which emulates a card swipe by transmitting a wireless signal to a given point-of-sales system. (The current version lacks support for contactless payments, but NXT-ID said an updated model with NFC will launch sometime in the next few weeks.)

Cards with magnetic stripes are added by swiping them through the selector, while cards with barcodes (e.g., membership, loyalty cards, or event tickets) can be manually copied numerically — enter the string of numbers below a given QR code or barcode and Wocket will generate a scannable image to match.

Somewhat unusually for a product of its category, the Wocket doesn’t rely on another device to operate — it’s meant to be used entirely independently, and only requires Bluetooth pairing to an iOS, Android, or Windows Phone smartphone for firmware updates. Security’s handled locally, too: you verify your identity by entering a pin on the Wocket selector’s touchscreen, and optionally by speaking a specific word or phrase.

NXT-ID isn’t selling the Wocket cheap — it retails for $180 in the U.S. — but the company has positioned it as a complete replacement for the everyday wallet you stick in your back pocket. It’s got a small pouch for ID cards, and NXT-ID said it’ll soon launch accessories with different materials and designs.

Emerging Tech

Too buzzed to drive? Don’t worry — this autonomous car-bar will drive to you

It might just be the best or worst idea that we've ever heard: A self-driving robot bartender you can summon with an app, which promises to mix you the perfect drink wherever you happen to be.
Wearables

10 top features you should be using on your Apple Watch

The Apple Watch can do more than just tell you the time, but you may not be aware of all the different functions it has. Our list of the 10 most often used functions and features will help you understand what it can really do.
Music

Spotify is the best streaming service, but its competitors aren’t far behind

It can be hard to decide which music streaming service is for you, so we've picked out the individual strengths of the most popular services, aiming to make your decision a little easier.
Computing

It's not all free money. Here's what to know before you try to mine Bitcoin

Mining Bitcoin today is harder than it used to be, but if you have enough time, money, and cheap electricity, you can still turn a profit. Here's how to get started mining Bitcoin at home and in the cloud.
Emerging Tech

‘Tech vest’ prevents Amazon workers from colliding with robot co-workers

Amazon workers at its fulfillment centers are using "tech vests" to help protect them from collisions with their robot co-workers. The robots already have obstacle avoidance sensors, but the belt offers another layer of safety.
Emerging Tech

3D printers are finally affordable. Here are the best models under $500

3D printer prices have dropped dramatically over the past few years, but just because something is cheap doesn’t mean it’s worth buying. Here, we’ve rounded up all the cheap 3D printers that are actually worth spending your money on.
Mobile

T-Mobile 5G rollout: Here is everything you need to know

2019 will be a huge year for T-Mobile. Not only is a merger with Sprint likely, but T-Mobile is also in the midst of building out its next-generation mobile service. Here's everything you need to know about the T-Mobile 5G rollout.
Emerging Tech

ANYmal dog robot can get back on its feet when someone pushes it over

Roboticists at ETH Zurich have demonstrated how their ANYmal four-legged robot is capable of taking a kicking and keeping on walking -- or getting back to its feet if it's pushed over.
Emerging Tech

A.I. finds non-infringing ways to copy drugs pharma spends billions developing

Researchers have demonstrated an artificial intelligence which can find new methods for producing existing pharmaceuticals in a way that doesn’t infringe on existing patents. Here's how.
Emerging Tech

Coinstar machines will let you swap cash for Bitcoin at your local grocery store

Coinstar, the company which owns the coin exchange machines found at grocery stores and elsewhere, will soon let you easily buy Bitcoin with your cash money. Here's how it will work.
Emerging Tech

Facebook hasn’t given up on the idea of building an internet drone

Facebook's efforts to provide internet connectivity from the skies using solar-powered drones suffered a blow last year when the company abandoned its "Aquila" drone project. But the company clearly hasn't given up on the idea.
Emerging Tech

World’s biggest fleet of campus delivery robots now transporting student meals

The world’s largest fleet of delivery robots on a university campus is coming to Fairfax County, Virginia’s George Mason University. Here's how the ordering and delivery process plays out.
Deals

Smart luggage does it all with wireless charger, built-in scale, GPS tracking

The SkyValet smart luggage, currently being funded on Kickstarter, offers solutions to many common travel struggles. With SkyValet, you no longer need separate portable chargers, a scale to weigh your bag, a lock, or a tracking device. It's…
Emerging Tech

The CRISPR baby saga continues as China confirms second gene-edited pregnancy

China’s official Xinhua news agency has confirmed that a second woman has become pregnant as part of a controversial experiment to create the world’s first genetically edited babies.