The traditional wallet or purse stuffed with credit and debit cards is on the way out. At least it seems like every major company is trying to make that happen with its own digital wallet app.
Apple has Apple Pay, Google has Android Pay, Wal-Mart and a bunch of other companies are working together to launch CurrentC, and now there's another new player. On the one hand, it's a major bank, which is good, but it does have some drawbacks you need to know.
The bank is Chase, and the system is called Chase Pay. Unlike Apple and Android's systems which support every type of card, Chase Pay only works if you're a Chase customer and in a store that Chase supports.
When you want to make a purchase, you open the Chase app, select your card and the app generates a QR code. As a refresher, QR codes are those bar codes that look like checkered squares. The QR code appears on your screen and the store clerk scans it, which finishes your transaction.
There are a few reasons Chase Pay is already looking a little iffy. The first is that if you use multiple banks, you'll only have access to your Chase cards. That's not nearly as convenient.
Plus, stores that already have to work to support Apple Pay and Android Pay probably aren't going to want to support a third system. Chase does say it's part of Wal-Mart's CurrentC project, so when that comes online you'll have more options.
Then there are QR codes. While smartphone screens have gotten better, infrared scanners still occasionally have trouble reading them. Apple and Google use near-field communication for payment, which lets you just tap your phone to a payment terminal with no fuss.
Also, Chase hasn't said how the QR code is generated. Being a bank, you would hope it's a one-time transaction code. However, if it gives away your credit card number, then it's a serious security risk.
The final worry is that Chase isn't even launching Chase Pay until mid 2016. That's a little late in the fast-changing world of technology.
What do you think about Chase's new payment system? Would you use it? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.