Mobile payment, the low-tech way!

I’m wondering myself how I didn’t get this idea earlier, so I’m sharing it with all of you:

Step 1: Open the back cover of your Fairphone 2.
Step 2: Put EC card with contactless payment feature into it. There’s just about enough space in there and the cover still closes properly. There’s also no bulge, if done correctly.
Step 3: Close cover again.
Step 4: Profit! Actually, quite the opposite, it’s easier to give money away now.


Nice idea! I wonder if the EC card is in danger of being damaged by radio waves… :thinking:

Or if the battery might suffer.

Oh and turn off vibration or the vibration motor will shred your card.


Actually not much to wonder about - as it is just too simple to even think of this solution. Maybe the one who initially had this idea felt a bit embarrassed. :slight_smile:
Many thanks for your share. So as ones electronic cash card or credit card may be just as valuable to loose than ones mobile it’s a pretty convenient synergy.
Furthermore no hassle dealing with any kind of app and the best - reversible
I like the headline.


You may turn it back on once the card has expired, no need for a pair of scissors…:laughing:


Oh right, I didn’t even think about that, because vibration is one of the first things I disable on a new phone/system, I even install apps and XPosed mods to disable every single bit of vibration redundantly, because I really hate phone vibration.


Also, another thing I noticed: Put the card pretty close to the camera, because if it’s too low, all speaker sounds (mainly notifications in my case) become much quieter. If it covers only half of the speaker, there’s no problem.

Oh, listen guys - he does not seem to belong to the ones keeping the phone in his pocket…your are missing something mate…:wink:

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NFC seems to be quite welcome to many people, even those who usually were rather holding back and cautious.
Maybe this could be a topic worth for discussing.

I am not really a friend of NFC as I think again it also lacks security and customers rather loose control of it.
My focus is on using it for payment which seems to be the key feature for this “near field communication” technique.
Different banks keep their own regulation on the amount limit that may be transferred per use until the pin is required. Some banks allow to disable the NFC function or set an individual max. amount.

Although I am quite satisfied with my bank DKB it neither allows me to disable the functionality nor to change the limit fixed at 25.-€.
Once being used, it’s enabled and cannot be undone.

Loosing control as a customer, well it wasn’t me who enabled it, but the customer friendly staff at the cash register of my favored tailor. So now many shops simply take it and use this function to their convenience. I just can look and see quick as it goes.

The problem I see here: If staying below the limit, mine is fixed at 25.-€, but many report having 50.-€ by default. So making several purchases within this limit may also get someone into depths as no pin is required. Let’s assume someone finds such a card purchasing several items up to 25/50 €, that’s all it takes. At the end of a day the owner may face a debit of 250/500€ or even more.
It would be a lot more secure for the owner if by random each 5-10 times (per hour maybe) the NFC function is used, entering the correct pin is mandatory locking the card otherwise just as when in conventional use.
Up to now I did not hear of such a mechanism being implemented or another security step limiting this function when the card is in the wrong hands.

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It sounds like you’re now talking about contactless in general, not just a phone’s NFC. Yes, I think you should be able to configure it.

Random would not be ideal, if you try to pay at a terminal that has no keypad for PINs (like a coffee machine). At the coffee machines of my university, contactless without a PIN is the only possible payment method.

Up to now I never came across one without a keypad. So far I only saw them as upgraded conventional ec-terminals which usually have keypads.
Yes, without one it would build up barriers, then.

Please excuse me: I don’t think I’m stupid…
But I don’t understand what this is all about. Why put the card into the telephone? How does the system work and what advantage does it have? Thanks.

May I humbly inform non-native English speakers that the verb verlieren in German translates as “lose”, not “loose” in English? The latter is an adjective, pronounced with a hard s, and corresponds to the German adjective locker or (haha) lose…


In the Netherlands we used to have the Chipknip system which was a pre-paid system for coffee machines and car parks. It required your PIN code for charging, but not for paying. When Chipknip was disabled in 2015, these machines received contactless terminals without PIN pad. That is how we got those coffee machines.

Likewise in Spain coffee machines at the airport (and probably elsewhere too) allowed you to swipe the magnet stripe without requiring PIN, they likely had a deal with the card networks to allow that. Those systems also received contactless terminals without PIN.

It just works by using the phone the same way you used the card. The NFC chip in the card still works through the back cover, so you can just hold your phone against the scanner.

Yes Fabian, that’s what I thought. So why is this better than just scanning the card?

I think the first posting was meant as a joke. It refers to the payment methods (Google Pay, Apple Pay) where you hold your phone onto the payment terminal. Those methods need NFC built into the phone which the FP2 doesn’t have.

But there are payment cards which support contactless payment. You hold them onto the payment terminal and beep – payment successful. If you put them into your phone, you hold your phone onto the terminal as you would do with the card. The phone does not have to meet any requirements as it’s not involved in the payment. The trick would even work with an old Nokia.

Although it’s a joke, a real advantage could be that you don’t forget to take your payment card with you.

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Oh dear, for someone my age (81), this feels like a very adolescent thing to do…


It’s actually not a joke, I really do this. I always have my phone in my pocket, so I don’t have to look for the card. I could also swap it out for the card that lets me in at work, because I keep forgetting to pull that out ahead of time and then I have to stand around while looking for it.

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Probably you’re not 81 years young :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:
And you could also pull out your wallet (containing your card) instead of the phone. Couldn’t you?