Starbucks Plans to Accept Contactless Payment in the UK

The Starbucks coffee chain is the latest merchant to signal it will accept contactless payment in the United Kingdom, adding more momentum to the rollout there.

Credit card issuer and acquirer Barclaycard, part of Barclays bank, announced today it had signed a deal with the large coffee chain to accept contactless in selected shops starting next spring. Provided these pilots are successful, the chain will roll out contactless across most of its stores in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Starbucks has more than 700 stores combined in the two countries.

The Starbucks announcement follows an earlier announcement by McDonald’s, in January, that the fast-food chain would accept contactless payment at its 1,200 restaurants throughout the United Kingdom starting this summer, one of the first tier-one merchants to embrace the technology in the country.

“We’re seeing more and more people use cards for payment, and contactless will allow us to serve our customers more quickly and with greater ease,” Pete Blower, Starbucks’ technology services manager for Europe, said in a statement.

Starbucks accepts contactless in some other countries, but not yet in its largest market, the United States. It is currently rolling out bar-code based payment from smartphones stateside.

Barclaycard used today’s Starbucks announcement to promote its “Quick Tap” NFC service, which it announced last Friday with mobile operator Orange UK. Users of the service, which only is available on one NFC phone so far, will be able to tap their phones to pay for purchases of £15 (US$24.27) and less at Starbucks and other contactless outlets. They will also be able to tap contactless credit and debit cards.  

Barclaycard and Barclays, which is leading the contactless rollout in the United Kingdom, have together issued more than 11.4 million contactless cards, more than 80% of the total contactless cards issued in the United Kingdom, said the bank. Barclaycard’s acquiring arm accounts for most of the contactless terminals deployed so far, as well.

Visa Europe was also included in today’s announcement with Starbucks, but MasterCard Worldwide’s PayPass application will also be accepted at Starbucks. All told, more than 50,000 merchant location accept payWave and PayPass in the United Kingdom, according to Barclaycard, though few of them are part of large chains.

HEADLINE NEWS

Apple to Enable Campus ID Cards in Wallet but Doesn’t Announce Opening of NFC Chip

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple will enable colleges and universities to add NFC-based student ID cards to its Wallet with OS upgrades to its Apple Watch and iPhone, the tech giant announced Monday on the opening day of its Worldwide Developers Conference.

Barclays Embeds Contactless Chips in Bands for Brand-Name Watchmakers, Hoping to Boost Payments Wearables

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight ­– The first contactless payments wearables resulting from UK-based Barclays partnerships with seven mostly analog watchmakers are beginning to roll out, with more planned–all using the bank’s bPay contactless chips and payments service.

Google Makes Progress Signing up Merchants in India for Tez Payments Service, but Penetration Still Low

NFC TIMES Exclusive – Google has signed up 640,000 small merchants in India to use its mobile payments service, Tez, a Google spokesman told NFC Times.

Vancouver’s TransLink Launches Open-Loop Ticketing, Though Offers Daily Riders Few Incentives to Tap Bank Cards to Pay

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Vancouver is the latest major city to enable riders to tap to pay fares with contactless bank cards, including card credentials loaded into such NFC-enabled mobile payments services as Apple Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay.  

Walmart Quietly Ends Trial of App that Would Have Enabled Customers to Avoid Checkout Lanes in Supercenters

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Walmart Inc. has ended a trial of its Mobile Express Scan & Go app in its Walmart stores in the U.S., which had enabled shoppers to scan their items themselves and pay with a stored credit or debit card, then leave the store, after having a greeter scan a bar code in their apps to briefly check the receipt.

Another Large Chinese City Supports QR Code-Based Transit Ticketing

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Another major Chinese city is accepting QR code-based payments for transit fare collection, with riders of the Shenzhen Metro now able to use WeChat Pay to cover the fares.

Deutsche Bank Plans to Expand New Payments Service for Airlines to Other Industries, Though No Rollouts Yet Scheduled

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Germany’s largest bank, which announced plans Monday to pilot a new payments system for airlines that would enable travelers to buy tickets without pulling out their credit or debit cards, is also planning to expand the scheme to other industries, a bank spokesman told NFC Times.

Apple Touts Strong Growth of Apple Pay Globally, though Again Fails to Release Actual Transaction Figures

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Apple said the number of Apple Pay users doubled globally while transactions tripled during the last quarter, but the company did not release many details explaining reasons for the increases and again released no actual figures on Apple Pay usage.

Contactless Payments Continues to Grow for Transport for London, Helped by Fare Capping

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Transport for London this week was again trumpeting its move to open-loop fare collection with contactless credit and debit cards and applications on NFC phones–noting that contactless payments now accounts for half of all pay-as-you-go metro and rail rides in and around the UK’s capital.

Visa and Mastercard Hope New Online Payments Spec Will Accelerate Rollout of Tokens; U.S. Merchant Group Blasts Network Move as Anticompetitive

Apr 26 2018

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Major card networks Visa and Mastercard hope a new technical framework for online transactions they are backing from their jointly owned EMVCo specifications group will help them keep more transactions on their networks, amid growing competition for mobile and other digital payments and lackluster take-up of the networks’ respective online digital wallets, Visa Checkout and Masterpass.

Second Smartwatch Supports Fitbit Pay, but Payments Service Remains Fragmented

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Struggling wearables maker Fitbit on Monday began selling its second smartwatch, the Fitbit Versa, supporting its NFC-enabled Fitbit Pay service, but not all versions of the new device support NFC in the U.S.