Nintendo is letting Japanese Wii U owners scan digital money cards through the console's GamePad, hinting at the possibility of this technology coming to the west.

Kotaku reports that Wii U owners in Japan can now use Suica and other prepaid e-money cards to make purchases at the Nintendo eShop. Through a systems update that will be hitting Japanese Wii U systems on July 22, Wii U owners can use digital money cards to make their Virtual Console purchases. The types of e-money cards that the Wii U will be able scan through its GamePad include Suica, Pasmo, Kitaca, Toica, Manaca, Icoca, Sugoca, Minoca and Hayakaken. These cards include IC chips that can interact with the GamePad's NFC scanner. Digital money cards are mainly used in Japan at train and bus terminals along with popular convenience store chains. Kotaku points out that the reason why there are so many of these cards is because they are distributed based on region, such as the Suica cards being used predominantly in Tokyo.

Since certain credit cards in the west contain similar technology, we're hoping that one day we'll be able to pay for our purchases on the Wii U like this as well.