BBC Shills for Cashless Society


Kevin Peachey and Carolyn Rice
BBC News
February 16, 2009

Consumers in the UK should expect a revolution in the way they pay for things in the near future, according to payments association Apacs.

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t
  • efoods

The cheque, which is 350 years old on 16 February, is said to be in irreversible decline as innovation points towards a cashless society.

Banks will increasingly battle for a consumer to use one card exclusively.

But as consumers prepare to pay and access accounts using their mobiles, retailers are worried costs will rise.

Pay date

By 2015, the number of payments made by cash in the UK will be overtaken for the first time by other ways of paying, according to Apacs.

At the end of this year, three million Barclays customers will be able to press their debit card to a sensor in more than 8,000 UK shops to register a payment.

Meanwhile, the UK could mirror technology already used in East Asia where the chip now found in a plastic card is placed in an everyday item such as a mobile phone or a watch. This is then pushed against a sensor in a shop to pay, and is known as “contactless” technology.

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