Apple's revolutionary contactless payment system, Apple Pay, is set for launch in the UK come July- ending months of speculation on whether the launch could happen prior to the next iPhone release.
Apple broke the news at its hugely followed World Wide Developers Conference which is currently being broadcasted live on Apple platforms. Without naming them, Apple stressed that several partnerships have been sealed with several major bank in the UK prior to the Apple Pay launch.
Apple also expressed joy over the fact that over 2,50,000 retailers in the UK will support contactless payments through Apple Pay, a figure larger than when the Apple Pay was launched in the UK last year. As a boost to daily commuters, Apple Pay can be used to buy tickets in the London transportation system.
As an additional bonus, MasterCard are offering access to Apple Pay to their customers at the time of launch. Customers who own MasterCard cards will be able to pay directly using Apple Pay from their iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus or their Apple watches. Several major banks like HSBC, MBNA, RBS/Natwest and Santander have agreed terms with MasterCard in this regard.
Mark Barnett, President of MasterCard UK & Ireland, said, “Apple Pay, combined with MasterCard’s digital payments technology, gives consumers a simple, convenient and secure way to shop. MasterCard was first in the world to offer contactless and mobile payment solutions, and Britons have rapidly adopted tap and pay behaviour.” While Jeremy Nicholds, Executive Director of Mobile at Visa Europe said, "If people leave the house with one item, it’s their mobile phone – we’ve worked alongside Apple and the various banks involved to give customers a really seamless and exciting new payment experience through Apple Pay."
While expectations from Apple Pay in the UK have been sky high, it is expected that the news will bring in hundreds of new retailers within the Apple Pay programme in the coming days.