NFC contactless payments come to the UK

For those of you unaware, Near-Field-Communication is the next big thing when it comes to mobile payments. Instead of fumbling about inside your wallet for your credit or debit card, NFC technology allows you to pay for you goods by simply swiping your phone over the payment device.

The problem is that this has been the next big thing for a while, it has just been slow to catch on - until now. Engadget is reporting that, in the UK at least, we're one step closer thanks to a partnership between Orange and Barclaycard.

They're dubbing it "Quick Tap" and both Orange and Barclay's are calling it a whole new movement:

Quick Tap with contactless payments from Barclaycard is a new service from Orange and Barclaycard that allows you to buy things with your phone.

No cards, no cash. Just tap and you've paid. It's a whole new movement. And you can start yours today.

There's even a handy youtube video explaining what it is and how it works. Don't get too excited just yet, though. For one, you'll need to have a either Barclaycard credit or debit card, or a credit card from Orange themselves. There's a further caveat, as well - there's currently only one phone that supports it, the unremarkable Samsung Tocco Lite. Orange promises that more supported phones will be available soon, but there's no word if existing NFC-capable handsets such as the Nexus S will be joining them.

In the US, Google themselves have been trying to push NFC as a payment mechanism. Hopefully it'll only be a matter of time before other operators the world over join in.

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21 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

nfc its comptible with felica if im not mistaken the same system of octopus card at HK...

sure having it in the cellphone its a very practical idea, but nfc can be implemented in many other ways.

Fail.

Why the hell would I want to risk scratching my phone? And honestly, it is not a bother "fumbling around for my wallet" for my debit card, as the article writer says.

I like the idea of NFC, I currently use contactless payments on my barclaycard wherever possible and when they start bringing out more styles of phones with nfc enabled then I'll probably jump aboard and use the new method.

Olemus, you sound like all the people when chip&pin was first announced, nah let's stick with signature who needs chip&pin, now chip&pin is everywhere.

sanke1 said,
What if I loose my phone? If someone manages to get my phone, can they use it to make purchases?

Just do what you would do anyways,just call up to have your phone/sim blocked, just like if you had your wallet/cards stolen. The thing with contactless and nfc payments is that I believe £15 is the maximum you can charge at a time.

What if I loose my phone? If someone manages to get my phone, can they use it to make purchases?

Sorry for delay. My cave was too big.

sanke1 said,
What if I loose my phone? If someone manages to get my phone, can they use it to make purchases?

Sorry for delay. My cave was too big.

Your phone (should) ask you for a pin every so often depending on which one you have. Besides, if you have a lock screen then you shouldnt need to worry.

sanke1 said,
What if I loose my phone? If someone manages to get my phone, can they use it to make purchases?

Sorry for delay. My cave was too big.

I would still carry the credit cards with me as backup. Remember credit cards can be used in ATM machines as well. Yeah sometimes you still need cash!

Do options scare you? NFC payments will complement rather than replace the current system. If you do not want, then simply don't use it.

Matt Hardwick said,
TBH, this isn't news - perhaps OLDs would be a better word.
Way to spam the crap out of the comments there Matt.

Looking forward to NFC payments. Will hopefully speed ups queues in shops/fast food places.
Security wise, I'd be happy with random pin requests, and a daily limit......but Barclaycard being a credit card means you'd already be covered for fraud/theft.

Olemus said,
Am I the only one who actually doesn't want this and would prefer to carry on using good old chip and pin?

Maybe, but with orange behind the wheel its as good as dead anyway

Olemus said,
Am I the only one who actually doesn't want this and would prefer to carry on using good old chip and pin?

It doesn't really matter what YOU want. It's not like they are taking away the 'good old chip and pin'.