A press release issued by MasterCard yesterday talks of their plans to enable limitless contactless payments across Europe by 2017.
MasterCard states that during the second quarter of 2015, contactless payments, also known as “Tap & Go”, grew by 170% year on year across Europe. They also state that the value of euro contactless payments tripled during this time compared to the same period in 2014.
“In Q2 2015, 1 out of 2 contactless transactions was done at food stores; followed by 14.5% at restaurants & bars and 10% at retail stores.”
To enable this trend in contactless payments to continue, MasterCard has announced new retailer standards for contactless NFC payments which will involve biometric or pin authentication of transactions on mobile devices, and it is this on-device authentication which, they say, will enable NFC smartphone payments for “all values”.
Chris Kangas, Head of Contactless Payments Europe at MasterCard said:
“The capabilities of smartphones combined with the latest terminal standard we’ve been deploying in Europe for the last 3 years will lead us to a future where one could pay with their smartphone everywhere. And, the list of retailers accepting contactless continues to grow. Over the last quarter, we have announced new contactless acceptance deals across Europe with major retailers like Ikea in Austria; Media Saturn in Germany; restaurants like McDonald’s in Belarus; the Electric Castle Festivals in Romania and the recent contactless launch in the metro in Kyiv in June. The drive to full contactless acceptance is taking hold as reflected in recent device statistics: in July 2015, 43% of new terminals installed had contactless capability which is an improvement from 21% in July 2014.”
Currently, some countries have a limit on how much can be spent in one transaction using contactless payment technology. In France the limit is €25 (US$28) and, just recently, the limit in the UK was increased from £20 to £30 (US$46).
Read the full press release from MasterCard here.