We all have a few little rectangular pieces of card tucked away in our wallets – some we’ve remembered to sign on the back, (some not), some bright and shiny with an impossibly futuristic sounding expiry date, and some looking like they’ve suffered one too many rounds with the chip and PIN machine.

But behind the scenes, there’s a bit of a revolution taking place – and a wave of headlines this week. Digital banking start-up Revolut has announced a 30% reduction in card fraud cases, following the introduction of its disposable virtual card for online purchases back in March. This innovation challenges the idea of what a ‘card’ is, making it more fit for purpose in online usage.

Meanwhile, Starling Bank have turned cards on their head – or their side at least – with a new portrait card. As their Art Director explains, “Our lives are largely lived in portrait now, even down to how we use our phones. A bank card in portrait reflects how we actually use our cards today; it’s intuitive, instinctive, and in short: it’s just common sense." As part of this re-design, all customer details will be on the back of the card, to improve security. This is a simple but striking statement to differentiate an important tangible touch point for a digital brand. It’s also a great physical symbol of Starling’s message around the need to change the way we think about banking, with simple and logical thought to challenge some assumed facts. 

It’s a case of Taste the Rainbow in the battle for wallet share – a riot of colour from Starling’s teal consumer accounts, navy blue business accounts, and of course Monzo’s coral splash. I feel a card catwalk coming on…