The Payments Council plans to launch a new service that will allow UK consumers to make secure payments using a mobile phone number.
Paym (pronounced as “pay em”) is the first payment service with the capacity to link current accounts in the UK with a mobile phone number. This enables consumers to send and receive payments to a current account at the same speed as other money transfer methods.
The new service, which will be integrated into the mobile banking and payments applications of customers, is now in the final testing phase, with the launch date set to be announced in April.
Customers of nine banks and building societies – Halifax Bank of Scotland, Cumberland Building Society, Barclays, Lloyds Bank, HSBC, Danske Bank, Santander and TSB Bank – will be the first to enjoy the service.
First Direct, Clydesdale Bank, NatWest, Isle of Man Bank, The Royal Bank of Scotland, RBS International trading as NatWest and Yorkshire Bank have pledged to offer the service later in the year, making Paym available in ninety per cent of current accounts.
Meanwhile, the Nationwide Building Society plans to join in by early 2015, while Ulster Bank and Metro Bank are still finalising their launch plans.
“We’re all used to the idea of a ‘mobile update’ to improve our apps – Paym is a mobile update for payments that means you can pay securely using just a mobile number,” said Payments Council chief executive Adrian Kamellard.
He noted that the service is an example of industry-wide collaboration that provides customers with tangible benefits.
With Paym, it will now be easier to split a restaurant bill or repay a friend for cinema tickets, he added.