/ Money, Technology

Are you excited about mobile payments?

Girl using mobile phone

HSBC, First Direct, Nationwide, Santander and Metro Bank will soon allow their customers to buy goods using Zapp once the app launches later this year. So will you be zapping over your payments?

With a number of key banks involved in the scheme, more than 18 million people could be completing transactions with a tap of their smartphone screen by the end of the year.

Security concerns have put people off taking advantage of mobile payments in the past, but if Zapp can provide the public with confidence that their funds will remain safe, this could be a big revolution to the retail and banking industry.

Many shoppers may have opted to avoid the high street this Christmas due to crowds and lengthy queues. Well, Zapp could dramatically reduce these with its promise of real-time payments at the touch of the button. No more waiting for chip-and-pin machines to connect or for cashiers to fumble about with your change. We could be in and out of the queue within seconds. Real-time payments are great news for businesses too.

Lightning fast payments

Zapp has been keen to address consumers’ fears about giving their bank details away to mobile payment providers. Its software integrates directly into existing online banking apps, so that no sensitive data needs to be revealed. And you could use the app when shopping online as clicking on Zapp’s icon will launch your banking app and give it the necessary data. The company also claims that payments will be covered by similar protections as those that exist today for debit card payments.

While more details are needed, the fact that five major banks have already signed up suggests that this is going to be a big trend for the year ahead.

We’ll be checking out the app when it’s available but what are your first thoughts? Are you excited at the prospect of paying for goods with your smartphone or would you prefer to stick to cash and cards?


I notice that Barclays are conspicuously missing from the list, presumably because they were first to this market with Pingit, which they will want to develop with similar functionality.

I want to be sure that the banks have taken care of security before I am interested. I had the same concerns about telephone banking and online banking when they first became available. One of the reasons I don’t trust banks is that they lied to us over phantom withdrawals, maintaining that these were impossible. The banks may have forgotten but I have not.

I am prepared to give a contactless card a go because of the limit on the amount of money that can be transferred, but mobile payments can be for much larger sums.

With you there wavechan. We still hear regularly how a major bank or government site or so has spectacularly lost goodness knows how many personal customer details to hackers. Unfortunately banks in the high street are also very sloppy by not shredding info which has been found and used also.

Anne Mc says:
17 January 2014

It sounds like a good idea but I won’t be using it if it takes the payments direct from my bank account because I don’t use a debit card, I use a credit card which has loyality points associated with it. I would also rather wait and see what problems arise and wait until they’ve been resolved.

I agree. I would use this only as a cash replacement and not as a credit card replacement. I wouldn’t want to lose my airmiles, points and cashback from my credit cards. Therefore I would probably use this only for transactions below £5 or £10 where it is uneconomic for a retailer to accept a card payment.

I don’t think I’d have a use for it. I use my credit card (which provides airmiles) for all my payments. Most retailers accept contactless payment for the smaller items anyway.

I would probably still set it up on my phone perhaps as a back-up option should my wallet be stolen or left at home by accident.

Nicky says:
18 January 2014

Would be very useful when I’ve forgotten my card. I never forget my phone.

I am happy just to use my contactless debit or credit card or my Orange Quicktap service on my smartphone.