Supermarket giants Asda and Sainsbury’s, as well as department store House of Fraser, are just some of the latest on a long list of British retailers to sign up for mobile payment service Zapp.
In place of wallets, shoppers will be able to pull out their phones to pay in stores when the new service launches.
Developed by the company behind Link cash machines, Zapp was introduced to UK banks in January. Ahead of its autumn launch, it successfully secured HSBC, First Direct, Nationwide, Santander and Metro Bank as clients who adopted the app to offer mobile payments to millions of customers across the UK.
The app moves money instantly from customer accounts through real-time payments, allowing for merchant cash flow to be significantly improved. This will massively benefit retailers, especially small and medium businesses, because Zapp transactions are at a considerably lower cost than cards and other alternative payment methods.
Transactions will be processed through secure digital “tokens” which means customers will not need to reveal any of their financial details, including bank account details, to retailers whilst shopping. Also, payments made through the app will be covered by similar protections that are already in place for debit card payments so in the instance that goods aren’t delivered or there are issues, consumers will be covered.
Speaking of the service, David Lowrence, Retail Client Engagement Manager at Fujitsu UK & Ireland commented:
“Given the proliferation in smartphone use, it is no surprise that mobile payments have seen such a huge surge. This announcement by Zapp is just the latest move in this story and continues to highlight how technology is shaping the payments industry.”
In addition, several large payment providers including Verifone, Klarna, Touch Go, Siemens, Apogee International, Vix Technologies, Global Charge, Just Desire and RSL will work with Zapp to bring mobile payments to market.
This broad range of retailers, billers and payment providers will deliver the service to over 35 million customers, representing the largest coalition of retailer support for a new payment method to ever be announced in the UK.
Zapp will be in competition with other payment systems like Apple Pay – the anticipated wallet service being embedded into iPhones and the Apple watch.
iOS, Android and Windows Phone users should be able to start using the app early next year. It will be rolled out progressively and customers will be alerted by their banks when it becomes available.