What Is A Microprocessor Card?
A microprocessor smartcard is defined as an IC chip contact card with a microprocessor and memory. The size of a credit card, this smart card contains a small microchip that can process and store thousands of bits of electronic data. Memory cards or magnetic stripe cards can only store information, while the microprocessor smart card is truly smart as it has its own operating system able to process data in reaction to a given situation.
This capability to record and modify information in its own non-volatile, physically protected memory makes the smart card a powerful and practical tool . Smart cards are small and portable, they can interact with computers and other automated systems, and the data they carry can be updated instantaneously.
Also with the ongoing mass adoption of microprocessors, predominantly in the banking (EMV) and mobile phone markets (SIM cards), it has led to falling costs through economies of scale. This makes microprocessor cards particularly attractive to developers in the emerging markets such as access control, E-passport, PKI and multi applications where their cryptographic capabilities addresses the issues of security.
There are open platforms available such as Java Card, Native Operating systems and the emerging .net architectures.