Alliance Activities : Publications : Implementation Considerations for Contactless Payment-Enabled Wearables

Implementation Considerations for Contactless Payment-Enabled Wearables

Publication Date: October 2017

Wearables, as a general category, cover wide variety of device types – from smartwatches to rings to wristbands to clothing – using different communications and security technologies. The total wearables market is expected to have significant growth, with a recent Gartner report estimating that 310.4 million wearable devices will be sold in 2017, growing to over 504 million by 2021.

This market growth for connected devices that can be used for a variety of functions presents opportunities for device manufacturers, service providers and the payments industry. Payment-enabling wearables can make payment easier and more convenient for consumers. BI Intelligence estimates that 62 percent of wearable device shipments will include payments functionality by 2020. From improved convenience for consumers to increased loyalty and “brand stickiness” sought by device manufacturers and service providers, wearables deliver benefits to all stakeholders in the ecosystem.

The Secure Technology Alliance Payments Council developed this white paper to provide a high-level overview of the landscape for payment-enabled wearables and to discuss key technology and deployment considerations for industry stakeholders. Since wearables are being developed with many form factors and technologies, the payment enablement processes can vary significantly depending on the device and technology selected. To provide concrete guidance for implementers, this white paper focuses on a subset of wearables and payment processes that encompass the most common wearables implementations today.

This white paper’s scope includes:

  • Wearables that support contactless transactions using technology that complies with ISO/IEC 14443
  • Security based on hardware secure elements
  • Provisioning models that use a broad range of technologies (e.g., WiFi, Bluetooth, over-the-wire, trusted service managers (TSMs))

About this White Paper

The Secure Technology Alliance Payments Council developed this white paper to provide an educational resource on the wearables landscape focusing on ISO/IEC 14443/secure element-based implementations and to discuss key considerations for implementing payments in wearables. Participants involved in the development and review of this white paper included: American Express; Cardtek US; Discover Financial Services; G+D Mobile Security; Gemalto; GlobalPlatform; IDEMIA; Infineon Technologies; IQ Devices; Mastercard; Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA); Multos International; NXP Semiconductors. 

About the Secure Technology Alliance Payments Council

The Secure Technology Alliance Payments Council focuses on securing payments and payment applications in the U.S. through industry dialogue, commentary on standards and specifications, technical guidance and educational programs, for consumers, merchants, issuers, acquirers, processors, payment networks, government regulators, mobile providers, industry suppliers and other industry stakeholders.

The Council’s primary goal is to inform and educate the market about the means of improving the security of the payments infrastructure and enhancing the payments experience. The group brings together payments industry stakeholders to work on projects related to implementing secured payments across all payment channels and payment technologies. The Payments Council’s projects include research projects, white papers, industry commentary, case studies, web seminars, workshops and other educational resources.