Apple Pay arrived in the U.S. last September at the same time as iOS 8, but so far it hasn’t extended beyond the borders of the United States. That looks set to change at WWDC tomorrow, when CEO Tim Cook is expected to announce that the service is rolling out in the U.K. too.
The Telegraph has the scoop on Apple’s plans for the mobile payment service: Apparently Brits will be able to use the service in two months’ time after the initial announcement at WWDC. Thanks to the widespread use of contactless credit cards in the country, much of the infrastructure required is already in place.
With many of the same financial firms operating on both sides of the Atlantic, deploying the new technology shouldn’t be difficult. “That’s one of the advantages of doing this on a global platform, it takes a couple of days,” MasterCard’s Mike Cowan told the Telegraph, adding that the credit card operator was “absolutely ready” to support Apple Pay.
Apple has previously promised to bring Apple Pay to more countries, and so the U.K. launch could lead to several announcements in quick succession. While Apple has been keen to trumpet the speed at which millions of users signed up for Apple Pay, it’s not clear just how well the platform is performing out in retail stores.
On Friday Reuters reported that many of the top retailers in the U.S. remained skeptical about the benefits of Apple Pay. Around a quarter of the retailers Reuters spoke to currently accept Apple Pay, with only four saying they have plans to adopt it within the next 12 months.
According to the survey, which covered 98 of the National Retail Federation’s list of the top 100 U.S. retailers, the major reasons for not accepting Apple Pay were a lack of customer demand, restricted access to the data from transactions and the cost of the technology required to facilitate the payments. It will be interesting to see what Apple has to say about its payments platform at WWDC tomorrow.