Putting Multiple Credit Card Accounts On the Same Plastic

The worst part about getting your credit card declined? Reaching back into your wallet to find one that works. Embarrassing! The Dynamics Card 2.0 MultiAccount feature solves that by putting two different accounts on the same piece of plastic.

Card 2.0, shown off today for the first time, features a programmable magnetic stripe that can handle apps like MultiAccount or Hidden, which conceals the number on the front of your card and protects it with a PIN number. After a period of non-use, your number disappears again and the Electronic Stripe erases any recent transaction information.

These are neat tricks, but it's hard to say if and when we'll ever see them in a mass production stage. What Dynamics is showing off is a concept that the big credit card purveyors may or may not embrace. And whether or not they're willing to sink considerable tech money into a system that's worked just fine for the last thirty years or is an open question. Then again, more accounts on the same card means more chances to spend, spend, spend!

Dynamics Unveils First-of-Its-Kind Payment Device

Transforms Payment Cards and Propels Next-Generation Payment Solutions
DEMO Fall 2010

SANTA CLARA, Calif.—(BUSINESS WIRE)—Dynamics, Inc., an innovator in next-generation payment devices, unveils its mobile device in a card form factor at DEMO Fall 2010, an emerging technology conference.

The startup, which has been operating in stealth mode over the past three years, closed one of the largest Series A financing rounds in payments last year — $5.7 million led by Adams Capital Management.

"After years of working with top card issuers, we are giving the public a glimpse at what many are embracing as the next evolution of US payments," said Jeff Mullen, CEO of Dynamics.

The device is Card 2.0™ — a paper-thin, flexible computing platform in a payment card form factor. The device includes the Electronic Stripe™ — the world's first fully card-programmable magnetic stripe. The Electronic Stripe™ can be read at any existing point-of-sale (POS) magnetic stripe reader. The device itself can change any bit of information on this programmable stripe at any given time. The technology does not require any change to the 60 million 1970s-era magnetic stripe readers or reeducation of its merchant base. The device is designed to be as thin, flexible, and durable as a traditional payment card and last over three years on a single battery charge.

Countless applications can be realized with the Card 2.0™ platform technology and are referred to as Payments 2.0® applications. Two Payments 2.0® applications will be showcased onstage tomorrow at DEMO:

MultiAccount™: The device includes two buttons on the face of a card. Next to each button is a printed account number and a light source. A user can select an account by pressing one of the buttons. The card visually indicates the selection by turning ON the light source associated with the selected account. Additionally, the magnetic-stripe information associated with the selected account is written to the Electronic Stripe™. The card can then be swiped at any magnetic stripe reader.

Hidden™: The device includes five buttons on the face of a card and a paper-thin flexible display. The display hides a portion of a cardholder's payment card number. To turn the device ON, a user must enter a personal unlocking code into the card. If the user enters in the correct unlocking code, the card will then visually display the user's payment card number so that the user can read the number for online transactions. The Electronic Stripe™ is then populated with the correct magnetic information so that the card can also be used with magnetic stripe readers. After a period of time, the display turns OFF and the Electronic Stripe™ erases itself – thus removing all critical payment information from the surface of the card. If the card is lost or stolen, the card is essentially useless.

Issuers can now introduce new payment functionality to all cardholder segments without changing the magnetic stripe infrastructure. For example, an issuer may introduce a fraud-reduction card in order to attract a security-conscious consumer, an enhanced loyalty card to attract an affinity-oriented consumer, and a money management card to attract a budget-conscious consumer.