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Banks to offer mobile phone payments at shops with Zapp

Development costs set to top £100m

Vocalink, the organisation which runs the banks' payment structure - including the Link ATM network - is enabling more consumers to pay at shop tills with their mobile phones, reports the Financial Times.

Under Vocalink plans customers will be able to load a mobile app onto their gadget, which will enable them to scan a barcode or tap a reader with their phones at the till to pay.

The FT says the new Zapp service is scheduled to launch in mid-2014, with a development cost of £100 million. Vocalink has set up the Zapp company to run the service.

Peter Keenan, chief executive of Zapp, told the FT, "This is one of those once-in-a-generation propositions, bringing on board acquirers, retailers, banks and customers."

Barclays already operates its Pingit money transfer service using mobile phones, which allows users to transfer money through email addresses like PayPal does, but it doesn't allow them to pay at retail tills.

Vocalink's move to set up Zapp follows recent research it published which showed strong support for mobile payments among users.

Vocalink surveyed 10,000 mobile phone users and found that 35 percent of those surveyed would be more likely to pay for items using their mobile phone if the service was provided by the banks.

And 63 percent of existing mobile users who had made a mobile payment agreed that a system which placed banks at the heart of a "ubiquitous mobile payments service would be more trusted".


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