Why are other countries ahead of the U.S. in applying smart card technology?

Card issuers in different countries are building their business case to justify the issuance of smart cards for different reasons. Here in the U.S., American Express launched the first wide-scale rollout of smart cards in 1999 with Blue from American Express, a credit card with a smart chip that offers extra security when shopping online. New markets, or markets that are evolving for other reasons, will further help make smart cards widespread in North America. Two examples are the network computing and cellular telephone industries that use smart cards to authenticate users in new systems that demand the utmost in security.