Apple Pay

UK Apple Pay Merchants Can Skirt Payments Cap

Apple’s vision that Apple Pay will one day replace wallets got a step closer, at least in the U.K. now that Apple Pay merchants can accept mobile payments above £30.

According to a report in The Telegraph, Jennifer Bailey, the head of Apple’s payments business, said that more than half of the contactless payment terminals located in the U.K. can accept Apple Pay transactions of any value. Previously most of the contactless payment terminals restricted the size to £30, the default upper limit for contactless card transactions. The report noted that when Apple Pay launched in the U.K. in 2015, only a few merchants accepted transactions without a limit.

“We think the majority of the contactless terminals [in the U.K.] are now limitless,” Bailey said in the report. The retailers that now accept the higher value payments include supermarkets such as Waitrose and Sainsbury’s and restaurants, including Pizza Express and Nando’s, noted the report.

The report noted that the higher payment amounts should help Apple stand out from other contactless payment cards. Mobile payments have been slow to take off because consumers don’t get the technology or don’t see the benefits over making payments with a physical card. The report noted that Apple said Apple Pay transactions in the U.K. have grown greatly in the last year and now counts 23 banks who support the service.

“Our momentum has been fantastic. We’re really excited about the progress,” Bailey said. Apple sees Apple Pay as one way it can boost revenue of its services business at a time when some of its hardware, including the iPad, are seeing a slowdown in growth. In the interview, Bailey implied the company is working on new technology that would replace other parts of the stodgy wallet outside of cards. “If you think about all the things in your wallet, we’re thinking about all those things, we’re probably actively working on most of them,” she said in the interview. “We’re starting with payments. Some are longer term; we see this as a long-term journey rather than something we can solve in the next 12 months.”


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Our data and analytics team has developed a number of creative methodologies and frameworks that measure and benchmark the innovation that’s reshaping the payments and commerce ecosystem. The September 2019 Mobile Order-Ahead Tracker, serves as a monthly framework for the space. It provides coverage of the most recent news and trends as well as a provider directory that highlights key players across the mobile order-ahead ecosystem.


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