Barclaycard Launches Android Pay Competitor

Rather than hopping on board with payment technologies from phone manufacturers like Apple PaySamsung Pay or even Android Pay, Barclays is going its own way in bringing NFC-enabled payments to its customers.

The U.K. bank announced yesterday (Sept. 15) contactless payments will be available on Android devices via its Barclaycard mobile app starting in November.

With the new feature, Barclaycard customers can make contactless payments for transactions under the spending limit of £30, as well as high-value “touch and go” payments of up to £100 by entering their PIN on the device, Barclays confirmed.

Android users will also have the ability to use real-time replacement service for lost or stolen Barclaycards, which will download the new card onto the app for contactless payments to prevent any break in service.

“Barclaycard has a strong history of innovation and we’re constantly looking for new ways to revolutionize payments,” Mike Saunders, Managing Director of Digital Consumer Payments at Barclaycard, said in a company release. “These new features transform Android phones into a mobile hub for our customers, allowing them to manage their account on the go, make contactless payments up to £100 and have a lost or stolen card instantly re-issued – letting them continue to make contactless payments straightaway.”

The move to offer contactless payments directly through the Barclaycard mobile app on Android devices may be a prime way for Barclays to capitalize on the growing popularity of contactless payments in the U.K.

Forbes reported in August that the global payment business processes almost half of all debit and credit card transactions within the U.K., and Barclaycard saw a 150 percent upsurge in the number of consumers who made purchases with contactless payments. The number of those transactions taking place over the last 12 months also soared 134 percent.

Back in July, amid the launch of Apple Pay in the U.K., a Barclays executive reportedly told MacRumors the company would be supporting the payment technology quite soon, but as of today the bank remains “notably absent” from the list of financial institutions offering the mobile payments platform.

That list of participating banks includes HSBC, First Direct, NatWest, M&S Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland, Santander and Ulster Bank, with Lloyds Banking Group announcing Monday (Sept. 14) it will offer Apple Pay to customers of its Lloyds Bank, Halifax and Bank of Scotland brands.

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