Wallets have been a staple accessory for men since the Renaissance period, when paper money was first introduced to the western world when the Massachusetts Bay colony swapped out some of their coins for the lighter, more efficient alternative. Since those times, the design of the wallet has hardly changed. They have always been foldable, pocket-sized items that are usually made from leather. But in 2017, could this essential item now be on its way out?
Although wallets are a common accessory that defines one’s “manliness,” and every man up to now has seen the need to have one, they are far from being just bog-standard money carriers. Design companies have enjoyed producing stylish and sleek offerings over the years. Likewise, men have taken pleasure in pulling out a branded wallet at a bar, restaurant, or shop knowing that the cool item can slightly enhance their image. In addition to that, having a bulky wallet in your pocket that you can feel, and knowing that all your money and cards are safe within it provides reassurance. But as technology moves on and more people begin to move away from carrying cash, wallets may soon be a thing of the past.
Recent research has revealed that 80 per cent of Americans pay for everyday purchases such as gas, meals and groceries with their debit cards, while 100 percent of 18-24 year-olds prefer the paperless method. Payment with cash is clearly becoming outdated, with the younger generation particularly favoring the swifter, card transactions. This highlights the fact that the market is already in place for currencies that transcend banks completely, such as bitcoin.
Bitcoin is a digital currency designed for making online payments. As the internet continues to tear down the world’s borders, a unified currency for the web seems like the most logical way of moving forward. Many industries have already adopted the cryptocurrency in an effort to get ahead of the curve. Bitcoin gambling at online casinos such as Crypto Games is also becoming more prevalent, as operators have realized that cryptocurrencies are fair, safe, and the savings made from using them can be passed on to customers in the form of bonuses.
But, cryptocurrencies like bitcoin aren’t confined to the online realm. In fact, a lot of restaurants and cafes are now beginning to accept the payments as well. When buying coffee at Starbucks, for instance, customers can now scan a code on their phone to complete a bitcoin transaction, and are even eligible for a discount in doing so. Apple Pay is another contactless form of performing transactions, and works with all contactless terminals – not just Apple Pay- specific ones.
With cash initially making way for cards, and now more efficient methods cropping up which only require smartphones, wallets could soon become surplus to requirement. For some men, it may be hard to move away from carrying their much-loved leather accessories. But a compromise could be made in that smartphone cases and covers get rejigged to emulate the slick wallets of old. After all, the phone seems to be becoming the wallet of the future.