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United Kingdom

News about the NFC market in United Kingdom — trials, pilots, tests and live services.

Bookatable tests iBeacon at 119 restaurants

October 24th, 2014

Europe’s largest online restaurant booking website is testing Apple’s iBeacon location technology to send offers and menus to potential diners toting iPhones as they pass by a participating location. Bookatable has worked with American Express to install BLE beacons in 119 restaurants participating in the London Restaurant Festival, including Ping Pong, Spaghetti House, Villandry, Oxo Tower, Thai Square and STK London.

Welsh museum tests iBeacons

October 17th, 2014

The National Roman Legion Museum in Caerleon, Wales, is using Bluetooth beacons to let visitors discover more about the collections on show on their mobile devices. The National Museum of Wales is testing the technology in partnership with People’s Collection Wales and app developer Locly. The move follows a successful first trial at the National Slate Museum in Llanberis.

Apple builds SIM into iPad Air 2

October 17th, 2014

Buyers of the iPad Air 2 will be the first to use a new Apple SIM that comes preinstalled in the Wi-Fi+Cellular version of the tablet and looks set to be the first implementation of a “SIM Within” patent published in November 2011. More

Tesco tests PowaTag mobile payments

October 15th, 2014

UK supermarket giant Tesco is conducting a one week test of Powa’s PowaTag mobile payments technology at its Dean Street store in London. To promote the service, a free lunchtime Meal Deal was offered on 13 and 14 October to the first five hundred shoppers to download the PowaTag app and use it to pay with their mobile phone.  More

Boku buys carrier billing rival Mopay

October 8th, 2014

Boku, the carrier billing specialist which is working with UK networks to let customers charge the cost of physical goods to their mobile phone bill, has acquired Germany-based rival Mopay. “The combined assets of the two companies will offer greater scale and operational efficiency and a more standardized carrier billing solution to the benefit of merchants, carriers and consumers alike,” Boku says.

Major UK merchants sign up for Zapp mobile payments

October 8th, 2014

Zapp, the mobile payments startup formed by UK payments infrastructure operator VocaLink, has announced that major retail chains including Sainsbury’s, Asda, House of Fraser, Thomas Cook, Shop Direct, Spar and Clarks are to use its… More

Mobile network operators partner with Boku to bring carrier billing to the physical world

October 3rd, 2014

Carrier billing provider Boku has partnered with UK mobile network operators O2, EE and Vodafone to make it possible for customers to charge public transport tickets, takeaway food, cups of coffee and other “click and… More

Uber runs NFC marketing campaign in London pubs and clubs

September 30th, 2014

Taxi hailing service Uber is running an NFC marketing campaign in more than 100 London pubs, bars and clubs to promote downloads of its app to drinkers looking to book a taxi ride home. More

John Lewis invests in BLE

September 29th, 2014

Upmarket UK department store chain John Lewis has invested £100,000 in Localz, a startup that uses Bluetooth beacons to improve the in-store shopping experience and has won the retailer’s first JLAB incubator program. The company will use the money to develop its technology “in conjunction with John Lewis” and to “launch live trials in store”.

TfL reports rapid adoption of contactless payments on London transport

September 26th, 2014

More than one million journeys have been paid for using a contactless payment card since Transport for London (TfL) began accepting the cards on the underground and commuter rail services on 16 September. “Contactless payments… More

Barclaycard to add wearable ticketing to bPay contactless wristband

September 23rd, 2014

Barclaycard is to extend the functionality of its bPay contactless wristband to include access control as well as payments, the card issuer has revealed, beginning with the introduction of branded bPay bands for fans of… More

Tesco pilots QR payments

September 18th, 2014

UK-based supermarket giant Tesco is trialling a mobile payments service based on QR codes, Marketing Week reports. “The PayQwiq service is currently available at 16 of Tesco’s smaller Express stores in London, as well as at 26 of its Express, Metro and Superstore store formats in Edinburgh. It is currently only available to a small number of staff members as part of a trial, although there are plans to extend that to customers in October,” the article says.

Weve drops wallet plans?

September 16th, 2014

UK carrier owned mobile commerce venture Weve has cancelled its planned mobile wallet service in the wake of the Apple Pay launch, The Telegraph reports. “A source at one mobile operator said Apple’s move meant it would have to write off gaining a share of payments from iPhone users, who represent about a third of the UK smartphone market,” the article says. Weve’s US equivalent, carrier joint venture Softcard, is continuing with its plans, however, and hopes to be available on NFC-enabled iPhones in 2015.

Barclays to provide corporate customers with finger vein biometric devices

September 5th, 2014

Barclays is to provide its UK corporate banking customers with finger vein biometric authentication devices that will let them “easily access their online bank accounts and authorise payments within seconds, without the need for PIN,… More

JD Sports adds BLE beacons

September 2nd, 2014

UK sports fashion chain JD has installed Bluetooth beacons at its new concept store in Manchester’s Trafford Centre, letting customers who have downloaded the JD app “access exclusive store content and shop from the app before paying in-store.” The store also features eight multi-channel kiosks and a social media wall, and staff have been equipped with iPads “to assist with customers’ enquiries.”

Vodafone to launch NFC payments in the UK this month

September 1st, 2014

Mobile network operator Vodafone is preparing to make NFC payments available to its customers in the UK in time for the launch of contactless bank card payments on London’s public transport network on 16 September,… More

Barclays calls time on Quick Tap NFC payments

September 1st, 2014

UK bank Barclays is to close its pioneering NFC payments service on 30 October. Quick Tap was the first commercially available NFC payments programme in the UK and was launched with mobile network Orange in… More

IPC Media promotes magazine sales via convenience store beacons

August 27th, 2014

Publisher IPC Media is using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) beacons installed in 740 One Stop convenience stores across the UK to offer discounted copies of its Chat, Pick Me Up, Woman and TV & Satellite… More

Orderella to install NFC tags and Bluetooth beacons in 79 UK pubs and bars

August 26th, 2014

Orderella, the developer of an app that lets customers place drinks orders and make payments from their mobile phone, is to install NFC tags and Bluetooth beacons in all the 79 pubs and bars across… More

NFC brings statues to life in London and Manchester

August 22nd, 2014

Visitors to the UK cities of London and Manchester can now interact via NFC with 35 high-profile statues that have been given a voice by actors, comedians and writers, including Patrick Stewart, Jeremy Paxman and Hugh… More

Full list of NFC trials, pilots, tests and live services around the world...

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