Heritage Bank trials Australia-first wearable payment device

Heritage Bank has stolen a march on larger rivals with a customer trial of a wearable payments device that links directly to a transaction account.

18 April 2017

Heritage Bank has stolen a march on larger rivals with a customer trial of a wearable payments device that links directly to a transaction account.

Heritage has launched a wrist band with an embedded chip that enables users to leave their wallet at home and make a purchase simply by “hovering” the device over a contactless payment terminal.

What’s different about this device is that it’s the first of its kind in Australia to link directly to a customer’s Visa Debit account, unlike other wearables that require users to load money onto a prepaid card.

Forty Heritage customers are now trialling the device until the end of this month, following a successful staff trial earlier this year.
CEO Peter Lock said Heritage aimed to launch the product to the marketplace later this year.

“We’re excited about giving people extra choice in how they want to make payments,” Mr Lock said.

“Our payment band works just like a Visa Debit card, but it’s conveniently strapped to your wrist like a watch. Because it contains a Visa payWave chip, you simply hover your payment band over the contactless reader when prompted for payment, then go!

“The band is waterproof, so whether you go out for morning run or a daily swim, or jump out of the car with children on your hip, you’ll no longer need to take your wallet or your phone.

“You can simply strap this new payment device to your wrist to make payments directly from your savings account.”

Mr Lock said Heritage continued to forge a reputation as a digital pioneer in the Australian banking sector, particularly through leveraging its market-leading expertise in cards and virtual payment technologies.

“It may come as a surprise to some that Heritage is Australia’s largest issuer of pre-paid cards, and issues around half the pre-paid travel cards in the country,” Mr Lock said.

“Our card and virtual payment solutions support products from iconic companies such as Qantas, Optus and Australia Post.

“But our digital innovation doesn’t stop there. As well as our new wearable device, we’ve also developed our own mobile phone contactless payment app, have just released a newly updated internet banking platform, and we’re currently upgrading all of our branches with new more digitally-focussed designs.”

Key information about Heritage’s wearable band:

  • The band uses the same “tap and go “contactless technology as Visa Debit cards with a chip securely inserted inside.
  • Just like any other payWave transaction there is a $100 limit, although wearers can still use the band for transactions above that amount by entering a PIN.
  • The payment band can be used wherever Visa payWave is accepted, in Australia or overseas.
  • The band is linked to a customer’s everyday transaction account and operates as a Visa Debit card.
  • If the wristband is lost or stolen, the account can be immediately suspended or cancelled through the Heritage Bank mobile banking app, by visiting a branch or calling the contact centre. 
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