Digital wallets are a relatively new phenomenon and there is still some confusion about the function that they serve. Also referred to as an e-wallet, the main reason for them is to allow the consolidation of multiple forms of payment – including credit cards – into one account that can be used easily online or in some brick and mortar establishments that accept the technology. With various wallets popping up all over, there may be some hesitation as to which specific wallet should be used. Below, we will review a few of the most popular digital wallets to give you a better idea of which one is right for you.
Perhaps one of the oldest and most popular forms of payment, PayPal is the original digital wallet. Allowing you to add bank accounts and credit cards is a primary function of the platform, and with virtually all online establishments accepting PayPal, you can easily and quickly check out without revealing your financial information to third parties. PayPal even provides an additional debit card to select members for use anywhere MasterCard is accepted. One downside to PayPal is that it can be rather unforgiving of some buying habits; those who make large or exotic purchases may wish to use another wallet for fear of having their accounts “limited”.
Unveiled within the past year, Google Wallet was one of the first digital wallets to coin the term and can be credited with starting the recent trend in their development. The wallet can be ported to your smartphone and can be used anywhere that NFC payments are accepted. Google Wallet is also configured for online payments and is accepted anywhere where the Google Checkout or Wallet icons are displayed.
eWallet is a premium service that allows you to sync your data to virtually any device, keeping all forms of payment up-to-date. Using government level encryption, your financial data is stored securely as well as your passwords, which can be programmed to be easily accessed from a computer or smartphone. Ewallet is free for use on traditional computers and costs $10 (flat fee) for use on iOS devices such as the iPhone and iPod.