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

In-Depth: Major Pays Wallets Accelerate Support for Closed-Loop Transit Ticketing

NFC TIMES Exclusive – One of the key battlegrounds for Apple, Google and Samsung as they seek more users for their respective Pays wallets is transit ticketing–with all three tech giants targeting both open-loop payments and–perhaps surprisingly–also closed-loop transit cards. (See table below).

Report: Will Deployment of Contactless EMV Cards in U.S. Drive Growth of NFC Mobile Payments? Conclusions Hard to Draw

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – With U.S. banks finally beginning to issue dual-interface EMV cards in significant numbers this year and more U.S. merchants accepting contactless and NFC payments, a key question becomes whether contactless card payment will help or hurt the prospects for what has generally been considered as disappointing take-up of NFC wallets.

Half of Face-to-Face Visa Transactions Outside of U.S. Expected to be Contactless Soon

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Half of all domestic face-to-face transactions with Visa-branded cards globally–outside of the U.S.–are expected to be contactless within the next two months, with Visa reporting that contactless technology is maturing in numerous countries worldwide, mainly in Europe and Asia.

Analysis: Canadians Increasingly Pay with Contactless Cards, Although Cash Continues to Play Key Role

Apr 22 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Contactless transactions in Canada topped 50% of all in-store card transactions for the first time ever during the first quarter of this year, said the country’s largest payments card processor, Moneris, this week.

Contactless Card Transactions Could Overtake Taps from NFC Phones ‘Quickly’ in the U.S.: Industry Veteran

Apr 23 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Transactions from contactless bank cards in the U.S. will “quickly surpass” those from NFC phones by the end of 2020, despite cards being rolled out much later than NFC-enabled wallets, industry veteran Randy Vanderhoof, head of the Secure Technology Alliance industry trade group and the affiliated U.S. Payments Forum, told NFC Times.

Samsung's Deal with Taiwan’s EasyCard is Latest in Global Push by Pays Wallets to Support Transit Payments

NFC Times Exclusive Insight – Samsung Pay is the first of the major NFC Pays wallets to announce it is working with Taiwan’s large closed-loop transit and retail payments service EasyCard, as it seeks to differentiate itself in a crowded and fast-growing mobile-payments market on the island nation.

In-Depth: Garmin Pay Provisioning Company Fit Pay Hopes to Build on Early Lead with Spin-Off, but Larger Competitors are Gearing Up

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – U.S.-based Nxt-ID disclosed late Thursday that the spin-off of its payments unit, Fit Pay, which provides bank card provisioning for Garmin Pay, would again be delayed, as it waits another couple of weeks for the closing of a nearly $17 million loan it needs to move forward with the new company.

In-Depth: Australia’s No. 2 City Shuns Open-Loop Transit Payments, Sticking with Closed-Loop Mifare for Launch of Mobile Service

Apr 10 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – While Australia is the top market worldwide for use of contactless bank cards at retail, any hopes for those same open-loop cards and card credentials on NFC phones being used as part of a nationwide, interoperable transit payments service have been dashed for now. 

Analysis: Apple Announces Breakthrough with Apple Card, but is It Mostly Slick Marketing?

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – With typical style and élan, Apple introduced its new credit card, Apple Card, at a product launch event this week, one of several new services the tech giant is counting on to provide growth as its iPhone sales slip.

In-Depth: Nxt-ID Gets Much-Needed Financing, Clearing Way to Spin Off Its Payments Wearables Provisioning Unit Fit Pay

Apr 5 2019

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – U.S.-based Nxt-ID, whose Fit Pay unit provides payment card provisioning for Garmin Pay, has announced a closing date for a $16.5 million loan it will use for working capital and to refinance an existing loan.

Australia’s Commonwealth Bank Sees Jump in Mobile Transactions with Apple Pay, Though Still Small Share of Total Card Use

NFC TIMES Exclusive Insight – Commonwealth Bank of Australia, one of Australia’s largest banks, has said its mobile wallet transactions have increased by nearly three times in the two months since introducing Apple Pay, according to a report, though the bank declines to release any actual transaction figures, and mobile transactions still are believed to make up a very small percentage of total transactions.

In-Depth: Singapore Prepares to Launch Acceptance of Open-Loop Transit Payments Following Lengthy Trial

NFC TIMES Exclusive InsightWhen it launches its SimplyGo service April 4, Singapore’s Land Transport Authority will become the first major transit authority in Asia outside of China to launch acceptance of open-loop payments of fares.