20 July 2018
Matt Scott

Matt Scott

Matt Scott - RenovITe Technologies Inc

13Posts 69,892Views 149Comments
Innovation in Financial Services

Innovation in Financial Services

A discussion of trends in innovation management within financial institutions, and the key processes, technology and cultural shifts driving innovation.

UK Mobile Proximity Payments 2015

10 August 2015  |  6287 views  |  1

A quick review of who has launched widely commercially available open-loop proximity payment (NFC) solutions for the UK market.

Firstly there is Everything Everywhere (EE) – they launched Cash on Tap in 2013 which is a slightly evolved version of the initial Orange QuickTap implementation.  To get this to work you need: an Android EE Monthly Contract Phone (with EE Basebuild OS); a “N” SIM (meaning it is capable of storing NFC Payment Applets); and the EE Cash on Tap App (from Google Play).  EE Cash on Tap is backed by a Visa Prepaid Account – when you install the App it gives you £5 of Credit and if you Top the Account up it will add an additional £5 as a reward (first time only).  You can use EE Cash on Tap wherever you see the Visa PayWave or Contactless Payment Symbol – and is also accepted on Transport for London.

Next there is Vodafone Wallet – initially launched this year using a similar approach to EE – in that it is also backed by a reloadable Visa Prepaid Account.  Where this differs is that Vodafone have worked closely with trusted third party software suppliers to enable other Cards to be Tokenized and stored on the SIM (a similar approach to ApplePay but using UICC/SIM rather than eSE).  To get this to work you need: an Android Vodafone Monthly Contract Phone (with Vodafone Basebuild OS); a “N” SIM (meaning it is capable of storing NFC Payment Applets); and the Vodafone Wallet and Vodafone SmartPass Apps (from Google Play).  You can use Vodafone Wallet wherever you see the Contactless Payment Symbol – and is also accepted on Transport for London.

Lastly there is ApplePay – which is currently only supported using iPhone 6, iPhone 6+ and the Apple Watch.  This follows a radically different approach – in that Payment Card Data is Tokenized and stored in the Embedded Secure Element (or in Apple Language: Secure Enclave) – in order to activate the NFC Payment a user use Biometrically verify themselves (fingerprint on the iPhones or Pulse Signature on the Apple Watch).  Whilst this does increase the security slightly it does mean the user experience is not as slick or as fast as the EE or Vodafone Approaches listed above – for example – there have been many publicised issues regarding use on TfL.  ApplePay does also rely on the Card Issuer’s support to implement.  ApplePay has also introduced the concept of “High Value Contactless Payments” – which move beyond the £20/£30 arbitrary limit on Contactless transactions – this is available at a small number of merchants – for example Pret-a-Manger.

So what?  Where do we want this technology to lead?  Well I for one would like to see more UK Issuers embracing this technology - not just from a Point of Sale point of view but other channels such as the ATM, Self Service machines and Kiosks to help create more positive consumer user experiences where the mobile is used.

Will 2015 (and 2016) be the year(s) Mobile Proximity payments begin to take off?  I certainly hope so.  Here's to the future.

UK Proximity Payment Options TagsCardsMobile & online

Comments: (2)

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 17 August, 2015, 16:40

Hi Matt. Thank you for the overview. One short remark: at the time being you need a VF branded device, but not necessarily a monthly plan. You can simply buy a prepaid NFC-SIM in a VF store. 

Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 thumb ups!
Matt Scott
Matt Scott - RenovITe Technologies Inc - London 19 August, 2015, 11:56

Thanks for the comment Christian - I only relayed the information provided by the three entities - although you do highlight that lack of adequate staff training and poor consumer education can limit the uptake of these services.

Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 thumb ups!
Comment on this story (membership required)

Latest posts from Matt

Demystifying the Omni-Channel confusion

03 September 2016  |  9100 views  |  0 comments | recomends Recommends 0

ATM Shimming and The Death of EMV 2

31 August 2015  |  12590 views  |  3 comments | recomends Recommends 1 TagsCardsPaymentsGroupBusiness Knowledge for IT

UK Mobile Proximity Payments 2015

10 August 2015  |  6287 views  |  1 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsCardsMobile & onlineGroupInnovation in Financial Services

Will Host Card Emulation save NFC?

14 August 2014  |  3710 views  |  0 comments | recomends Recommends 1 TagsCardsMobile & onlineGroupInnovation in Financial Services

Pace of Change and Innovation

01 October 2013  |  3665 views  |  1 comments | recomends Recommends 0 TagsCardsPaymentsGroupBanking Architecture

Matt's profile

job title Chief Technology Officer
location London
member since 2009
Summary profile See full profile »
Leading the development of new software platforms and services.

Matt's expertise

Member since 2009
13 posts149 comments

Who's commenting on Matt's posts