Barclays has added a feature to its Pingit app which gives big businesses the ability to send money to people through their mobile phone numbers.
Firms like insurers, retailers and utilities can tap into Barclays' existing File Gateway channel to send payments directly into an individual's Barclays Pingit account - without having to know their bank account or card details.
The payments can be made to any UK mobile phone number, with non-Pingit users receiving a text message telling them how to register for the app and receive their money.
Barclays claims that the system provides a way for businesses to reduce the physical and environmental costs associated with manual and paper-based processes - including cash handling, cheque production and issuing costs - without needing to seek sensitive account information from individuals.
Mike Walters, head, UK corporate payments, Barclays, says: "Consumers today want quick and convenient ways to receive value. Mobile payment provides a fast and secure way to do this without the need for consumers to disclose their account number."
Initially launched as a person-to-person payments tool, Pingit has already been extended to let people pay bills and to make purchases through their phones. From early next year it will have competition from a bank industry-wide P2P service and from the VocaLink-backed Zapp m-commerce initiative.