Barclays PLC (ADR) (NYSE:BCS) has announced that it will be teaming up with Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) in support of the latter’s payment service, Apple Pay.
The decision by the bank is good news for Apple because it will allow the payment service to have a deeper footing in the UK. The service was launched in Britain in July 2015, but its adoption has been relatively small, and progress has been slow. The bank had previously been indecisive about linking its cards with Apple Pay.
Barclays Bank CEO, Ashok Vaswani, made the announcement that finally made the bank’s stance clear on the matter. He announced that the bank will officially launch its support services with Apple by April. Mr. Vaswani revealed through email that the bank will launch support services for Apple Pay in the next 60 to 75 days if things go as planned. Barclays will, therefore, begin to offer card support any time from mid-March to early April.
Barclays’ delay in initiating its services has been rather disappointing to Apple Pay and Barclays customers. The bank now hopes the launch date will not be too late to warrant the migration of customers to other banks. Barclays is yet to reveal the reason for the delay in adoption of Apple Pay, but the bank has been working on its own payment services.
One such service is bPay, launched in 2015. It also launched a near-field communication (NFC) payment service available to Barclays cardholders, not forgetting its joint operations with mobile payment firm, Zapp.
Barclays was the only bank among the four major British banks that was yet to support the NFC payment service. Now that it is, Apple Pay should benefit from an increased customer base.
The bank’s involvement will also encourage customers to trust the new service. One of the major hurdles faced by Apple Pay at the beginning of its launch was a slow adoption rate because it was a new service in the market and people did not trust it. However as banks offered support, the process of adoption by customers became much easier.