Postal Savings Bank of China trials biometric cards for digital currency payments

Postal Bank of China sign
DUAL-PURPOSE: The bank’s ‘hard wallet’ card lets consumers use digital money and access healthcare

Chinese consumers taking part in the large-scale testing of the country’s central bank digital currency (CBDC) in Beijing over the Chinese New Year period are trialling a biometric ‘hard wallet’ card developed by the Postal Savings Bank of China.

The dual payments and healthcare card incorporates a biometric sensor that enables users to verify their identity with their fingerprint and authenticate online and offline payments made using digital yuan stored in the hard wallet.

The card has been specifically developed so consumers can both use the CBDC and access healthcare services digitally without needing a smartphone.

“Chen Yuejin, a citizen of Beijing who was over 60 years old, walked into Wangfujing Wuyutai Tea House. He took out a card and scanned it on the ‘Healthcare’ device in the shop to complete the health status inquiry and registration. Then he used the card to pay for the purchased goods and the ink screen window on the card immediately displayed the transaction amount and balance,” the Xinhua news agency reports.

“With this card, it is much more convenient to enter and exit public places, and you can pay with just one touch. It is especially suitable for the elderly who have difficulty using smartphones.

“According to the staff of Postal Savings Bank of China, the digital renminbi passive visual card hard wallet is still in the [pilot] stage and will be given as a priority to the elderly in Dongcheng District.”

The Postal Savings Bank of China first tested a contactless hard wallet for digital yuan in Shanghai in January.

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