A smart card, simply speaking, is a credit card sized plastic card with an embedded computer chip and some memory. You can put it to a wide variety of uses to help simplify your daily life. Shopping, identification, telephone services and licenses are just couples of them. ISO 7816 defines the smart cards standard it details the physical, electrical, mechanical and application programming interface for it.
Description of Smart card
Smart card technology Smart card technology has its historical origin in the late 60's and 70's when inventors in Germany, Japan and France filled the original patents`. However due to several factors , not just of which was immature semiconductors technology , most work on smart cards was not at all completed so 80s' after that ,major rollouts such as the French National Visa Debit and served as eye openers to the potential of smart cards.
The industry is now growing at a tremendous rate, shipping more than one million cards per year since 1998.
Manufacturing a smart card involves much more than just sticking a chip on the Plastic. The plastic used is usually P.V.C (poly vinyl chloride), but other substitutes like A.B.S (acryl nitrite butadiene styrene), P.C (polycarbonate) and PET is also used. The chip Is also known as micro module, is very thin and is embodied into the plastic substrate or Card. To do this a cavity is formed or milled into the plastic card.
Then either a cold or hot glue process bonds the micro module to the cards. The SIM (subscriber identification module) cards in cellphones are smart cards, and act as a repository for information like owner ID, cash balance, etc. More than 300 million of these cards are being used world wide today.Small dish TV satellite receivers also use smart cards for storing subscription information. These are over four million in the US alone and millions more in Europe and Asia.There are tons of other applications that smart cards can be used for.