Paving the way to one-card utopia

By Julian Matthews, June 4, 1999

On the surface, the premise for Malaysia’s national multipurpose card (MPC) project seems logical–a single smartcard to combine all functions and then some, instead of the various cards cluttering one’s wallet.

Embedded on a chip on the card would be one’s identity, medical details, driving license, and passport. It would also double as credit, debit, e-cash and automated teller machine (ATM) card.

With a thumb print or identity number, the card could also function as an access key for individualized applications such as club memberships, ticket-less air travel, shopping discounts or allowing access to buildings and restricted areas.
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Proton to set up US$300m R&D center in Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR–Leading smartcard technology provider Proton World International SA will invest US$300 million over the next 10 years in a regional research, development and support center in Malaysia.

“We will work on key smartcard technology applications, specifically integrating contact and contactless technologies onto a single card which can operate in both modes,” said Danny Vanhoutte, general manager of Triumphant Launch Sdn Bhd, the local representative company of Proton World.

He said the convergence of a contact card for e-purse transactions and a contactless card for transport applications is seen by many card issuers and industry analysts as the “killer application” that will lead to widespread use of smartcards.

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