PNC launched the account in July 2008 in response to Generation Y's spending habits, hoping to simplify their finances and help them manage them easier. The account has three sub-accounts: a "Spend" account (regular checking), a "Reserve" account (backup checking that incurs interest), and a "Growth" account (savings). The account also allows easier transfer of funds between the three accounts, and uses a calendar to keep track of finances instead of a more traditional ledger.
Due to the limited use of checks by Generation Y as a result of online bill pay and direct bill pay, the account only allows three checks used a month, then charges a $.50 surcharge for every check used afterwards. By upgrading to the "Virtual Wallet Performance" account type, this restriction and fee, as well as many others, are removed. Effective December 2013, account holders will be able to write an unlimited amount of checks at no charge.
The account also comes with its own mobile app on the iPhone and iPod Touch as well as Android devices. To help promote Virtual Wallet, PNC launched a series of indie music concerts called The Wallet Sessions in 2012.
PNC has seen an increase of 130 accounts daily of the Virtual Wallet account since its launch. Virtual Wallet has also won several awards in the banking industry. PNC reached one million Virtual Wallet accounts on June 12, 2012.