Apple Pay set to launch in the UK

Apple's latest application will allow users to use contactless payment points to complete transactions. Picture: Getty
Apple's latest application will allow users to use contactless payment points to complete transactions. Picture: Getty
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APPLE Pay, the contactless payment solution built into the electronics giant’s iPhone 6, is set to launch in the UK tomorrow.

The system means iPhone users can “tap-and-pay” with their phone for the first time.

The launch marks the first time the software will be available outside the US, and will be on offer to anyone with an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus. It will enable users to tap their phone on contactless payment points to complete transactions - just like a contactless credit card.

The system will also work with the Apple Watch.

Apple is still yet to officially confirm the date of the launch. However, leaked memos from at least one UK supermarket has made reference to Tuesday’s date - July 14 - and a tweet from the HSBC UK Twitter account on Sunday confirmed the date in response to a question on the subject, before being swiftly deleted.

Once live, users of Apple Pay will hold their phone close to a contactless reader while keeping a finger on the Touch ID fingerprint scanner in order to authorise a payment.

Those with the latest iPad Air 2 or iPad mini 3 will also be able to use Apple Pay within apps to make purchases online.

A host of major UK brands and banks have signed up to support Apple Pay at launch, including Boots, Waitrose and the Post Office, with the same spending limit of £20 in place for single contactless transactions.

This is expected to increase to £30 in September.

When it is launched, more than 250,000 locations will accept Apple Pay.

Apple also said that privacy and security is a key part of Pay, with the iPhone maker saying that when a credit or debit card is added, the actual card numbers are not stored on the device, or Apple’s servers.

Instead, each transaction is completed with a “one-time unique, dynamic security code”.

Rival Google is set to launch their own mobile payment solution, Android Pay, later this year, while Barclaycard has already launched the bPay system, where users can choose between either a wristband, key fob or intelligent sticker for their phone that contains contactless technology and can be linked with any bank account and card.

Contactless payment continues to grow rapidly in popularity, with more than £2 billion spent via the system in 2014, according to the UK Cards Association.