Smart Wallets Prevent Overspending

By Meera Dolasia on December 18, 2010

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Coming soon to a store near you - A smart wallet that will monitor your cash and even prevent you from spending, if your balances get really low.  Sounds intriguing? Read on!

Proverbial Wallets were designed by John Kestner, a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Lab, who came with the idea as a way to keep people aware of their shrinking bank balances, something that is difficult to do in a world where most purchases are made with the swipe of a card.

In order to keep current with the user's bank balance, the wallets are fitted with a tiny computer, which uses a Bluetooth device to connect to the owner's phone - that in turn connects to the bank account via the Internet. That means that the wallet has up-to-date information about the owners' account at all times, and can therefore, react to it accordingly. In keeping with different spending habits, Mr. Kestner has come up with three designs.

The Mother Bear

Named because it is protective about the owners' money, the Mother Bear is designed to encourage savings. The smart device is fitted with a hinge, that gets harder and harder to open, as the bank balance shrinks - If the account is at a zero balance, the wallet simply shuts down, preventing the owner from overspending, by even a penny.

The Peacock

The Peacock is meant for people who live from one paycheck to the next. Every time a paycheck gets deposited to the account, the wallet puffs up nice and big, thanks to a mechanical arm that is built inside. As the owner spends through his salary, the wallet starts to deflate, becoming completely flat by the time the date for the next paycheck rolls around.

The Bumblebee

Designed for big spenders, the Bumblebee is equipped with a vibrator that buzzes each time a purchase is made - The bigger the transaction, the longer the buzz, to alert the owner of the situation, before it is too late. An added bonus? It will buzz even when someone else is trying to use the credit card, therefore preventing fraudulent transactions.

Mr. Kestner is also working on smaller, more compact versions of his wallets for just credit cards and while the Proverbial wallet is still just a prototype, he is ready to bring it to stores as soon as he can find a financial backer. He would of course try and keep the cost of these smart devices as low as possible, for if they were expensive, it would defeat the purpose of his whole exercise wouldn't it?

Sources: gearlog.com,eco.mit.edu

Proverbial Wallets from John Kestner on Vimeo.

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236 Comments
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  • paply
    paply12/19/2013
    i need one
    • brett11/26/2013
      thay are all so cool i wish i had one i need!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! it
      • otter
        otter11/10/2013
        The mother bear is so cool! What if you just take out 1 cent or something small over and over again?
        • headream100
          headream10010/9/2013
          I may as well need a Mother Bear myself! (*chuckle*) Although I like the Peacock design better.
          • mmm8/5/2013
            I was wondering what if when the wallet connects to the bank account it sends a link to john kester that shows the password and username of the account and they drain their wallets
            • deejer12345/19/2013
              wow
              • that random guy10/10/2012
                That is really cool.I want one.
                • Maiawyn 9/24/2012
                  Wow! That's cool!
                  • alica9/24/2012
                    i bought one it broke the first time i used i plus it cost 95.99 please dont buy rip off no refunds
                    • lauraar
                      lauraar9/3/2012
                      it loke good to ate

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