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July 13, 2015

Mobile payments on cusp of UK adoption surge

Wide scale adoption of mobile payment technology aiding consumer adoption.

By James Nunns

The UK is racing ahead with its adoption of smartphone and smart watch payments, with it outpacing the U.S. market.

NFC-enabled smartphone devices have been heavily adopted which is leading to the establishment of a mobile payments culture.

This is according to Deloitte, which found that interest in mobile payment use is unsurprisingly highest amongst 18-34 year old (34%), while 20% of 55-75 year olds are interested in it.

These levels of interest have resulted in the adoption of 250,000 sales terminals which incorporate contactless readers. It is expected that as awareness and the accessibility of contactless reading terminal grows, so will the acceptance of mobile payments in the UK.

Deloitte highlights key factors that should boost the adoption of mobile payments, these include a familiarity with contactless payments and an acceptance of using finger print readers to authorise transactions.

Ed Marsden, UK lead telecommunications partner, Deloitte, said: "We are reaching an inflection point for NFC-enabled mobile payments in the UK. We expect that usage of contactless mobile payments could surge, and, within twelve months, paying for a flat white with a phone will become as familiar as contactless card payments."

Despite the positive adoption of this technology, security remains a barrier to adoption, with 42% of mobile phone users citing this as a reason for not using the technology.

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However, Marsden expects that as new services are launched, concerns about security will decline. The growth of fingerprint scanners in smartphones, which currently stands at about 5 million will help customers get use to using the technology and trusting it.

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