No, I'm not talking about those plastic payment methods everyone is intimately familiar with. I'm focused on those ones dreamed up by inventors who set out to change the economic landscape, only to fade into relative obscurity.
? Don't worry, I won't blame you if you don't. It's a Toronto-based cash alternative designed to replace change for small purchases like coffee and snacks. It comes in the form of a small plastic tag that can be attached to a lanyard. After pre-loading it with money from their bank account (up to $100 per day) users can scan it against a docking station at participating merchants and the money is instantly spent with no cash exchanged. The only fee is $1.50 every time the user loads the card.
Dexit rolled out its tags at Ryerson University
in 2004 with a host of participating retailers and plans for national expansion. (I bought one back then). However, this cash alternative never caught on in any widespread fashion. It can now only be used in seven locations in Toronto and at one retailer in Ottawa. Two cities is hardly a phenomenon and yet, Dexit may be an early precursor to a potentially global and more permanent cashless payment method.