The Strategist

Android Pay to Conquer Britain

03/24/2016 - 14:41

According to the corporation Google, the UK stores will get another mean of payment in the next few months. This is Android Pay payment system, through which users can pay using Android OS smartphones. Android Pay was launched in September last year and is only working in the US now. With launching Android Pay in the British market, Google is going to compete with another payment system - Apple Pay.

by HLundgaard
by HLundgaard
On Wednesday, Google announced that Android Pay payment service will be operational in the UK in the next few months.

With Android Pay, users can pay via Android OS smartphones at cashier’s desks in shops in payment terminals. Launch of Google's own payment service was announced in May last year. In September, Android Pay started to operate in the United States. UK will be the second country after the United States, where the service will start working. Previously, the company also reported that Android Pay can be launched in Australia in June.

Android Pay runs on OS Android 4.4 Kit Kat and higher smartphones equipped with NFC technology. Android Pay users in the UK will be able to pay with cards of largest payment systems MasterCard and Visa, issued by banks and financial companies such as Bank of Scotland, First Direct, Halifax, HSBC, Lloyds Bank, M & S Bank, MBNA and Nationwide Building Society. The system will be available in many stores and retail outlets including Boots pharmacies, coffee houses Costa Coffee and Starbucks, Waitrose and Aldi supermarkets, fast foods KFC, BP gas stations and London public transport.

According to Google, 1.5 million people monthly are being connected to Android Pay in the US. The UK is also an attractive market for Google - according to research firm IHS, the British own 36 million Android OS smartphones. In the fall of 2014, Apple Inc. also launched its own payment service - Apple Pay. The system entered the UK market in July last year. According to IHS analyst Jack Kent, Apple Pay’s launch renewed interest in the mobile payments market: «Google lags behind Apple when it comes to getting credit card data from users, which means the company could face more serious obstacles for wider distribution."

Android Pay is another attempt of Google to enter the mobile payments market. Back in 2011, the company introduced Google Wallet system. However, due to problems with support of leading US mobile operators, Google failed to massively introduce the system.

As the popularity of mobile payments services is growing, the largest high-tech companies are stepping up in the fight for consumers. According to research firm eMarketer, the total volume of payments made by means of smartphones in retail stores amounted to $ 3.5 billion in 2014. By 2018, it will grow to $ 118 billion.