Let’s say you step out of a cab and need to pay the driver but neither you nor him has any change, you bounce from one street side vendor to another for a change of money, now that’s irritating for sure!

That’s’ where the concept of digital wallet kicks in!

A digital wallet is just like a soft copy of your conventional leather bound wallet. It is an e way to perform monetary transactions. It means no more jumping from your seat when you accidently sit before taking out your big fat wallet from your back pocket. Guys know the pain I am taking about now. Also digital wallet can hold all your debit/credit cards information, your loyalty cards, gift cards, identity cards, membership cards and more. It lets you send and receive money, pay bills, recharge mobiles, book movie tickets and send physical and e-gifts both online and offline. So that means less and less trips to ATM, no wandering around for change, no standing in big queue for making petty payments and no checking for your wallet again and again in a crowded place. Also many digital wallet offer discounts, cashbacks, free vouchers and coupons with your every use. Off course the terms and conditions apply but still a ‘something free’ has got a nice ring to it.

A digital wallet comprises of two things, software that’s your mobile app and data. Former takes care of security, encryption for the personal information and for actual transaction. The later handles the database of user input information i.e. shipping address, billing address, payments methods and others.

Client side digital wallet is self-maintained and is fully compatible with e-commerce sites. You download and install a mobile app and then enter all of your required payment and shipping information. Then, when you decide to check out from a compatible website, your e-wallet fills out the forms from the pre-filled information in its database so as to save you from the displeasure of entering your 16 digit card number repeatedly.

A digital wallet is free of charge for consumers but the wallet vendors charge the merchants. Clients benefit from protection, convenience, faster check out and more shopping. Merchants benefit because they are more protected against fraud and increased productivity and faster sale.

In India Paytm, MobikWik, Freecharge, PayU, Oxigen and Citrus are a few leading mobile wallet companies.

Concerns that dampen one’s decision to switch from its old analog wallet to one comprised of bits and bytes are security and privacy. Some providers, like Apple Pay and Google Wallet, use tokenization, which masks the credit card information and is transaction-specific to prevent hackers from acquiring consumer’s personal data. However, the wallets allow a user to load cash from a very small amount to a maximum of ₹ 10,000. The risk associated with the loss of money through transaction is minimal. Also experts say digital wallets are way more superior. Still, consumers are uncertain of this technology. Although they are more likely to adopt this if they receive discounts and other perks in exchange.

But after dealing with paper money all your life, it would be a relief not having to go to ATM every other day. When all you have to do is touch some options on your smartphone or tap it to make payments and voila!