Apple Pay has been about the impact it might have in the retail space, where it certainly has the potential to be disruptive but it’s the in-app payments aspect that is the most exciting. It has been available to customers here in the US since last October, has finally come to U.K.
A number of leading apps have already announced that they will take Apple Pay for payments in their apps including Groupon, OpenTable, Target and Kickstarter, to name just a few. Partnerships with social media players such as Pinterest give Apple Pay a competitive edge and help those sites monetise their platform. Several major UK banks will be late to join the party, customers of Nationwide, NatWest, RBS and Santander have been able to start using Apple Pay immediately at any contactless point-of-sale terminal.
Research from Visa found that there is a high demand among consumers for more mobile payment solutions, with 60 per cent of iOS users keen to pay for good and services using their phone. Jeremy Nicholds, Executive Director of Mobile at Visa Europe, commented: “Consumer demand for mobile contactless payments combined with the fact that 70 per cent of people in the UK own a smartphone means that the pieces of the puzzle are coming together for a seismic shift from plastic to digital.
Innovation doesn’t stop at Apple Pay, new payment methods are anticipated that are more secure such as biometric payments, using heartbeat as a way to authenticate payment, or completely cashless payments based on data exchange and social currency. Cashless systems allow for greater personalisation of perks and services which underlines the thrust of UK consumer expectation over the coming years.