Heritage Bank's Power Suit is a piece of wearable tech that enables owners to pay with a swipe of their sleeve.
Register for full access
Our library content is no longer freely available. Please register to gain access to more than 12,000 innovations, updated daily. Our content is global in scope and covers solutions to the world's biggest challenges across 18 sectors.
Cards offering contactless payments have arguably made retail transactions easier, but haven’t got rid of the wallet altogether. However, there are companies working hard on smarter ways to buy goods and services, such as Finland’s Uniqul, which is developing facial recognition-powered payments. The latest is the Power Suit, a piece of wearable tech that enables owners to pay with a swipe of their sleeve.
Developed by Australia’s Heritage Bank, the suit is made from fine merino wool and tailored by MJ Bale in Japan. The NFC chip typically found in Visa payWave contactless payment cards is woven into the suit sleeve as it’s being made, and is then linked to the owner’s account. Rather than getting out a card to touch to the payment terminal, wearers can simply brush their sleeve across in order to make a purchase, providing their bill is less than AUD 100. The video below shows the suit in action:
So far, the project has seen 12 prototype suits created and sold to Heritage Bank customers, with the latest suit fetching AUD 510 through an eBay auction. The money raised is heading to autism charity 4 ASD Kids, although it’s easy to see how this merging of fashion and finance technology could become a profitable enterprise. Are there other ways that fashion could become smarter?