A new service named Paym (intended to be pronounced Pay ’em) is due to launch later this year, allowing UK bank accountholders to link their current account number with their mobile number.
This is to enable payments to be received to the mobile number, rather than having to provide full bank details to anyone who owes you money.
A specific launch date has not been set, but final testing is already underway and the launch is expected to be this spring, with a final date set in April.
When Paym first launches, it will be available to accountholders of HSBC, TSB, Santander, Lloyds Bank, Halifax, Danske Bank, Barclays, Bank of Scotland and Cumberland Building Society.
Adrian Kamellard, chief executive of the Payments Council, said: “Paym will make it easier to repay a friend for cinema tickets, split a restaurant bill or settle up for a colleague’s birthday collection.
“The service has the potential to link up every bank account in the country with a mobile number – millions of people will be able to use it this year and we look forward to expanding Paym even further.”
Before 2014 is over, the service is expected to expand to include NatWest, RBS, RBS International t/a NatWest, Clydesdale Bank, first direct, Isle of Man Bank and Yorkshire Bank.
Other interested parties include Ulster Bank and Metro Bank – both finalising their launch plans – and Nationwide Building Society, expected for launch in early 2015.
Paym comes hot on the heels of Zapp, also due to launch later this year, which again links your current account with your smartphone.
Zapp is due to be built into the mobile apps of several major British banks by the end of 2014, allowing retailers to accept payments quickly and easily at the till using customers’ handsets, rather than cash or cards.
Together, the innovations mean that by the end of the year, a large and increasing proportion of UK accountholders will have the potential to both send and receive payments using their mobile phone – whether that means an app installed on their handset, or their mobile phone number.