A new report from the UK Cards Association confirms a significant increase in the use of contactless cards. To be sure, £7.75bn was spent using contactless cards in 2015 – representing a massive jump from £2.32bn in 2014.
According to the report, the increase in contactless card popularity can be attributed to a number of factors, including the growth of contactless transport ticketing and an increase in the payment limit to £30.
“With the amount spent using contactless cards almost trebling between 2014 and 2015 and the payment limit increasing to £30, it is clear 2015 was the year contactless went mainstream,” Graham Peacop, Chief Executive of The UK Cards Association, explained. “Whether buying a sandwich on the go, or paying for a round of drinks or a tube journey, contactless has become the default way people choose to pay for every day shopping.“
In addition, says Peacop, retailers are moving away from simply offering a traditional high street experience to embrace e-commerce and innovative ways of taking payments.
“At the same time, consumers are increasingly using their cards, and especially their contactless cards, for smaller and smaller purchases. With such convenience and flexibility, payment cards will continue to play a central role in the future,” he added.
Similarly, transport operators and local authorities across the country are now seeking to emulate London’s experience of accepting contactless cards as a method of paying for travel, while charities are also working on contactless giving initiatives. In addition, consumers are beginning to make card payments without their physical cards, using devices such as smartphones and smartwatches.
As we’ve previously discussed on Rambus Press, secure smartcards represent a giant leap forward, particularly for public transportation systems that have relied on outmoded paper tickets and tokens for decades. Indeed, the global smart city of the future will be defined by public transport systems that offer convenience and ease of travel – ensuring the continued and rapid development of friction-free commerce. Ultimately, passengers will be able to use their device of choice to travel seamlessly across smart cities, whether it is a smartphone, smartwatch, or even 3D printed clothes with embedded chips.
Of course, buying and storing train or bus tickets is only part of the smart ticketing equation for future smart cities. Using a smartphone or wearable as a hub, passengers will be able to purchase food and other items, reserve parking spaces, update travel plans in real-time, interact with augmented reality (AR) and Bluetooth beacons, view luggage status and even replace current paper travel documents, such as passports.
Interested in learning more about how Rambus is providing secure technology products for smart transport? You can check out our article archive on the subject here.