Mobile operator Everything Everywhere and credit card giant Mastercard have signed a five-year deal to support mobile payment services in UK stores.
At first, the companies will offer a pre-paid ‘digital wallet’ service that will allow Everything Everywhere customers to make contactless payments at any of the 100,000 retail chains that accept them, using their mobile phones.
In future, they plan to offer other services including peer-to-peer money transfers, like Barclays’ PingIt service. They also plan to offer small businesses the ability to accept contactless payments from customers’ mobile phone.
“We’re delighted to be working with Everything Everywhere, the UK’s leading mobile operator,"” said Marion King, president of MasterCard UK & Ireland. MasterCard’s vision is of a world beyond cash, where consumers and small businesses alike can benefit from simple payments using smart technology,
“As the use of cash continues to decline, we will be able to provide Everything Everywhere’s 27 million customers with an attractive range of new payment services backed by the processing power and security of MasterCard,” King said.
Gerry McQuade, chief marketing officer at Everything Everywhere, said: “Working with MasterCard is an important step in making mobile contactless payments more widely available for our 27 million customers."
"By moving our existing co-branded card offers onto mobile devices, we are closer to a world where our customers will be able to use their mobile phone to pay for travel to work, pay for small purchases and take advantage of loyalty rewards from their favourite retail outlets," he said.
MasterCard says that the partnership will see technological and financial assets combined to simplify the process of paying for goods and services for people and small businesses.
Orange, one of Everything Everywhere’s consumer brands, launched its QuickTap contactless payment scheme in the UK last June, but it received criticism for the limited number of compatible handsets.
Online payment giant PayPal recently said it would be introducing in-store payments in to millions of US stores through a partnership with Discover Financial Services, with the possibility of an international rollout in the future.