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You may soon be able to pay for goods using your, ermm, sunglasses

by Josh Levenson | March 18, 2017March 18, 2017 12:00 pm PST

No, we’re not lying. At SXSW on Tuesday, Visa unveiled a prototype pair of NFC-enabled shades, which can be used to pay for goods in any brick-and-mortar store with a contactless card reader.

One arm of the glasses is equipped with a small NFC chip that’s linked to a user’s Visa prepaid account — so instead of inserting a card and entering a PIN, they’ll be able to tap the glasses on a payment terminal to complete a transaction.

“It ties back to our tagline of everywhere you want to be,” Visa’s chief brand and innovation marketing officer, Chris Curtin, told CNBC during a briefing.

“Without it, it’s hard for us to fulfil our tagline. Our view is we take form factors that you don’t expect to be payment-enabled like sunglasses or maybe like a ring and expose to the market that maybe it can be.”

No word on a release date

Unfortunately, Visa didn’t shine a light on when (and whether) its contactless sunglasses will hit the shelves. The firm is reportedly using SXSW as an platform to not only gauge demand, but to also find a bank or brand to sponsor the product.


Josh Levenson

Josh Levenson is an avid technology enthusiast who writes news and the occasional how-to. He's also a self-proclaimed sneakerhead and has been an...