Apple’s mobile payment system, Apple Pay, has finally landed in the United Kingdom. However, some banks that were supposed to be supporting Apple Pay are missing.
Around nine months after it was first released in the United States, Apple Pay officially went live on Tuesday. During its annual Worldwide Developers Conference held in June last month in the city of San Francisco, Apple had stated that Apple Pay would land in the UK by July of this year, although the company had not specified any launch date. At explained by Jennifer Bailey, vice president of the Apple Pay division, the payment system is expected to be made available at over 250,000 shops across the UK.
Upon its launch in the UK, Apple Pay was supposed to include eight of the most prominent banking institutions in the region, and to be followed by more by fall of this year. The list of supported banks include MBNA, Nationwide, NatWest, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander, and Ulster Bank, with MasterCard, American Express, and Visa cards from all these banks supported.
However, banks like HSBC (responsible for inadvertently leaking Apple Pay’s launch date in the UK) and Lloyds, who were supposed to be included in the list, are not supported by the payment system upon launch. HSBC has said that it expects to be included later this month, as well as its online arm FirstDirect. As for Lloyds, it will be supported by Apple Pay come fall, together with Halifax and Bank of Scotland.
What about Barclays? This bank is actually going for its own bPay mobile payment system of contactless wearable devices. However, Barclays revealed today that it will have its debit and Barclaycard credit cards supported with Apple Pay in the future.
Last month, Bailey said that Apple is targeting to hit over 70 percent of credit and debit cards in the UK. Retail companies that include Boots, the Co-op, and Marks & Spencer, just to name a few, as well as London’s public transit system, were already announced as planning to adopt Apple Pay.
Initially, Apple Pay will be matching the 20 British Pound limit for each transaction set by contactless cards to stop criminals from stealing a user’s card or phone. But after September of this year, users will be able to spend 30 British Pounds at a time on their contactless cards, with Apple Pay also possibly increasing around that time.
Apple Pay has already had achieved some success in the US, but in order for it to truly take off globally, it will need to expand to other regions outside America. With today’s announcement, Apple Pay has taken a step closer to reaching that goal.
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