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Barclays develops contactless payments app for Android mobile OS

Barclays bank is developing its own contactless payments service for users of the Android mobile phone operating system (OS) – hoping to launch in June 2016

Barclays bank is developing a contactless payments app for customers who use Android OS mobile phones, with a launch expected in June 2015.

The service – an Android phone alternative to Apple Pay, which was launched in the UK in July 2015 – enables users to pay for goods and services through a contactless terminal using their smartphones.

Ashok Vaswani, chief executive of Barclays UK, said: “Giving customers the choice about how to make everyday payments while making it really easy for people to use our services is why we’ve designed this contactless payment functionality.

"It’s all there in one place,  ready  to go with no need to enter card details, delivering a brilliant experience in an instant.”

In April 2016 Barclays finally enabled its customers to use Apple Pay, bringing it in line with the other major retail banks.

Barclays was slow to bring Apple Pay to its customers, waiting nine months after the app’s launch to allow its customers to use it. In contrast, competitors – including HSBC and Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) – signed up to Apple Pay from its first day in the UK.

In March 2016 Google said it would launch its Android Pay app, while phone manufacturer Samsung said Samsung Pay would be available in the UK later in the year.

Apple said more than one million  credit cards  were registered with Apple Pay in the US in the first three days of its availability. Around five million people signed up to Samsung Pay and spent around $500m using it in the six months after its launch in the US and South Korea.

Read more about contactless payments

Visa Europe said three billion contactless transactions had been made across Europe in the last 12 months, which is three times more than in the same period in the previous year.

Tristan Kirchner, executive director, product management at Visa Europe said: “This kind of success hasn’t happened overnight, and it’s down to the sterling efforts across the payment industry making today’s achievement possible while setting the stage for tomorrow’s technology, including wearable devices and mobile payment services.”

Read more on IT for financial services

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