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Visa Introduce Payment Ring For Rio Olympics

For those planning to go to Olympic games in Rio this August, make note that Visa will be the only card accepted at official venues. A pretty sweet deal for the payment provider. The company is using the event to introduce a new ring that will let people pay with a wave of their hand: No phone, wallet or even battery needed.


The unnamed band is pretty simple in design. Band's interior contains a secure microchip from Gemalto and an embedded antenna; the exterior is simply a black or white ceramic loop. It also won't be custom-fitted but, with 20 sizes available during its trial run, most testers should be able to find a good match. 

That initial group includes employees and partners, but most notably the 45 athletes sponsored by the payment provider, including swimmer Missy Franklin and fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad. It was discussions with those Olympians that inspired the creation of the payment ring; wallets and standard wearables can be a real annoyance when you're constantly changing in and out of uniform.

Decathlete Ashton Eaton specifically told Visa he wanted something he could just integrate into his daily routine and forget about. So the ring was designed taking concept from him. Ring is water resistant to 50 meters and never need charging. Instead, the ring draws a tiny bit of power from the payment terminal just enough to enable the transaction. 

Rings have an annoying tendency to go missing, but Visa prepared for that situation too. The payment band can be deactivated from a smartphone, and thieves who find one won't be able to get anything useful out of it thanks to tokenization. That means sensitive data is replaced by a digital identifier that can be used to process payments, but doesn't actually contain any personal information.

At this point the ring is merely a prototype and won't be available to the general public in time for Rio. The ring works best when the full 'O' of it is facing toward the terminal; if it's held at a 90-degree position above the keypad, as it would be when you hold your palm flat, the reader doesn't pick it up. 

Shrey Kapoor is a Tech-Enthusiast, Harvard certified Cyber Security and Cyber Forensics Expert. He Founder, which is one of the India's Top Tech News Website. Even Forbes and many other renowned publishers took his articles reference. Shrey is a Technology analyst, strategic thinker and creative writer who is passionate to deliver the best, latest possible Tech-News to his followers and subscribers. He completed his masters in Artificial Intelligence & Robotics, certified in IPR, T.Q.M. & ISO 9001:2008 In Quality Management Systems.

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