Everything Everywhere first to launch contactless mobile payment

Everything Everywhere, the joint venture between Orange and T-Mobile, is to launch the UK’s first commercial contactless mobile payment systems.

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The new service, in partnership with Barclaycard, is due to roll out in the second quarter of 2011 and will allow consumers to purchase items by swiping their mobile phones across an electronic reader.

Everything Everywhere says contactless payment provides “greater convenience” with over 40,000 high street shops currently ready to accept the new purchase method.

Barclaycard and Orange announced their plans to bring contactless mobile payments to the UK market in 2009 and the partnership has already produced a co-branded contactless credit card.

There had been concern that mobile payment technology could be less secure than other payment methods but Everything Everywhere has allayed fears by introducing an industry-backed SIM-based payment system to ensure customers’ personal data is protected. MasterCard will provide the payment capability for the transactions.

Everything Everywhere’s chief development officer Gerry McQuade says: “This is the beginning of a revolution in how we pay for things on the high street. It is a cultural shift that is as important as the launch of the personal credit card or ATMs.”

Other mobile brands have also signalled a move towards contactless payment technology: Apple is expected to include payment technology in the next versions of the iPad and iPhone and Nokia has said it will activate contactless payment technology in its C7 handset which is launching this year.

McDonald’s also announced earlier this month that it is to become the first major fast food chain to roll out a contactless payment service later this year.

There are already 11.6 million contactless credit and debit cards in circulation, over 10 million of which have been issued by Barclaycard and Barclays.

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