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Mobile Payment Values Rise Threefold As Importance To Retailers Grows

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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Worldpay figures show 336 percent rise in mobile payment values thanks to wider adoption and wider support

Mobile and contactless payments continue to grow in importance to retailers, according to figures from payment processing firm Worldpay, which claims the value of such transactions skyrocketed during the first six months of the year in the UK. 

The total value of mobile payments rose to £370 million during the first half of 2017 – an increase of 336 percent year on year – and there were rises month on month too. In January, the figure was £46 million, whereas by June it had reached £74 million. 

Worldpay attributes the rise to growing adoption of Apple Pay as well as the subsequent launches of rivals Android Pay and Samsung Pay. Wider compatibility of smartphones and additional support from UK banks have also been a significant factor. 

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“Mobile spending has shaken off the novelty tag, and is breaking its own spending records virtually every month,” said James Frost at Worldpay. “Granted there’s still some way to go before we start cutting up our cards and chucking away our wallets, but it’s easy to see why everyone from start-ups to tech giants is eager to have a stake in the technology.” 

Supermarkets continue to reap the rewards, accounting for more than half of all mobile payments, while Londoners make 28 percent of all such transactions. This is more than anywhere else in the country, but the capital’s share has fallen from 32 percent since the end of 2016. 

“The introduction of the Oyster Card back in 2003 gave Londoners a bit of a head-start when it comes to tapping to pay, but the intervening 14 years might as well be a century when it comes to how far the payments landscape has evolved,” continued Frost.

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“We’re now seeing pockets of incredible growth in mobile adoption right across the country with the South East of England accounting for 15 percent of total spend and the North West making up 10 percent percent.” 

Contactless payments by card are also set to smash records. In 2016, the total value of contactless payments reached £10 million. By the end of June 2017, this was already 9 million. However Worldpay believes mobile will continue to rise in importance. 

“Mobile is already emerging as the dominant payment channel for ecommerce,” concluded Frost. “It’s very difficult to argue against it doing the same for in-store payments; and at a far faster rate than many would imagine.”  

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