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What’s in the cards for 2013?

Week 03, 2013

Here comes this special time of the year when industry analysts try to turn themselves into astrologists and to anticipate the major trends for the new year. So what can we expect for 2013?


The structure of the smart card industry itself is bound to evolve, as the core role of the industry is no longer to “glue silicon into plastic” but to become a full service provider to application issuers. The first embodiment of this trend is undoubtedly the launch of Trustonic (cf. Focus).


The embedded SIM (eUICC) concept is maturing slower than we thought back in 2010 with the first announcements. The eUICC drives a total power shift in the mobile communication value chain. All details are in our latest Smart Insights Report “eUICC, a disruption in the SIM market”


In 2013, we are going to pass major steps in the adoption of smart payment cards with the EMV migration in China and in the US. The last remaining large market to migrate is India, where the commitment to EMV has been reiterated.


Governments monopoly on ID is under pressure by the leading players in the connected world, as social networks are more and more involved in certifying the identity of their users, thus building ID databases. Governments are still the only ones issuing passports and IDs, but corporate ID and social network ID are rising.


The limit between closed loop and open loop in transport is getting increasingly blurred. For long Hong Kong Octopus cards have allowed to pay at merchants. Now, we witness financial institutions getting into the transport payment business, and transport operators becoming payment processors.


Will 2013 be the year of NFC? Never has the context been as positive as now with multiple NFC payment projects launched in various countries, and with a flow of new NFC-enabled devices, not only handsets, announced. Now, over 2103, we will see if NFC actually becomes a mainstream technology.


Anyhow, let’s wish 2013 will be a smarter year!


Thierry Spanjaard

Chief Editor

Smart Insights