The biggest question is, what exactly is an e-wallet? Let’s start with the basics. E-Wallets are like real wallets except they’re used to pay for things electronically as opposed to using cash or credit cards. So you’re basically talking about online accounts that allow people to make electronic transactions and where money can be sent and received.
So a e-wallet is a virtual wallet that stores information about your bank accounts, credit cards, and personal info so you can make electronic transactions from one online account to another. That means stock portfolios, PayPal accounts, checking accounts(online) and even the new digital wallets on our smartphones or any device connected to the internet can qualify as a e-wallet.
Types of E-Wallets:
- Online Wallets – This is very similar to online banking which enables you to transfer funds from your “real” bank accounts into a virtual account that allows you to make internet purchases or send/receive money from other people using the web. These are offered by both banks and non-banks, but they are typically used to make online transactions from ecommerce websites.
- Mobile Wallets – Mobile wallets allow you to use your mobile device (phone or tablet) to store your debit, credit, loyalty cards and more so that you can pay for things without cash or with just a swipe of your phone. These virtual wallets are stored in the cloud and can only be accessed by an app downloaded on your mobile device.
- Connected Wallets – This is a physical device that looks like a USB drive or has similar features to it, except this device stores access to your e-wallet information. Think of it as a USB device that also works as a wallet. Although you can use it anywhere, the connected wallet is designed for your PC or Mac and comes with different types of security features to prevent unauthorized use.
- Virtual Wallets – This type of e-wallet is similar to an online account, but it’s even more secure because you cannot withdraw funds from the eWallet. A virtual wallet is a program that acts as a storage place for your debit, credit, and loyalty cards only.
When you download a virtual wallet on a mobile device, desktop computer or tablet, it can digitally store all of your physical debit and credit cards in addition to coupons, points earned from purchases through your loyalty programs, receipts, boarding passes and more. This can be done by using an App available on Google Play or iTunes, for both Apple and Android devices.