I’m certainly no Luddite. If I was, I’m reasonable sure PC & Tech Authority wouldn’t have hired me. (I imagine the interview would have gone something like: “what’s your favourite bit of technology” to which I might have replied “oh, I oppose all new technologies” and they could have said “thanks for coming in.”) Anyway – obviously I’m a bit of a gadget fanboy and I absolutely love seeing innovative new designs and idea come to fruition – it’s definitely a perk of the job.
However – and it’s something I’ve covered in these little rants before – I still like to have a back-up plan when it comes to anything too techie because you can bet your bottom dollar that, at some point, when you really need to rely on it, it’ll leave you high and dry.
Case in point: amongst a growing subset of my friends I seem to be the last person carrying cash. I can kind of see where they’re coming from – we’ve come a long way since $10 was the minimum for EFTPOS purchases, wireless EFT machines can be found at outdoor markets and NFC means that some cards just need to be waved in the general direction of the counter, so the need for cash has definitely diminished.
But it hasn’t disappeared. I know this because I seem to be the one with my hand in my pocket all the damn time. ATM broken in the pub? Looks like it’s my round. Cafe is cash only? Well then, breakfast is on me. Cabbie can’t get a signal on the card machine? Don’t panic, I’ve got this trip.
And I can only assume it’s going to get worse. Smartphone manufacturers are working to include Near Field Communications in new handsets with card emulation and electronic cash being the main two applications proposed.
So, in the not so distant future, not only will you have to not worry about taking cash out with you – you won’t even have to take a wallet or even a credit card. It’ll all be on your mobile phone... Until the battery dies, or your carrier network gets the hiccups. In which case, I assume I’m picking up the bill? Fine.