Is anyone else’s wallet getting chunky and unwieldy with too many cards to carry? When I put all of my credit cards, gift cards and store club cards in mine, I’m reminded of a Seinfeld episode. In it, George Costanza’s wallet was nearly as thick as a phone book and you can see below that it eventually explodes due to all of the bulk. Any time I can go digital instead of stuffing more data in my wallet, I do it. And today, Target (s tgt) just gave me a good reason to stop carrying their gift cards, even though I’ll still be using them.
The retailer today introduced Mobile GiftCards as a way to carry the gift card account information on any mobile phone with Internet capabilities. Using a secure PIN of your choice, you simply register Target gift cards online — you can add a nickname to any card and use the account number and access code printed on the card for registration.
Once registered, you’re able to check the balance through your phone or use the phone to pay for Target purchases in the checkout line. Each gift card appears with a scannable barcode that appears on your phone’s display — just hand the phone over to your cashier where the barcode is scanned and your purchase is paid for. Easy to use and no need to worry about exploding wallets — that’s a win-win in my book. It’s way too late for George, but not too late for you and your phone.
Related research from GigaOM Pro (sub req’d):