You can now tip London buskers without handing over cash

london buskers tip without cash busker
One of London’s more unusual buskers. Farrukh/Flickr

With so many people these days ditching cash for contactless payments, there may be times when they reach into their pocket for a few coins to tip a particularly impressive street performer, only to find nothing there.

With some buskers using public performances as their only or main source of income, that could be valuable revenue lost. But a new scheme in London hopes to offer a lifeline in the form of, you guessed it, contactless payments.

It’s the result of a collaboration between the Mayor of London’s office, the Busk in London organization, and PayPal-owned payments company iZettle, and equips buskers with a reader device so passers-by can simply tap to donate a pre-defined amount using contactless payment cards or NFC-equipped mobile devices with digital wallets.

It’s thought to be the first organized scheme in the world allowing buskers to offer the payment method alongside old-fashioned cash donations.

London mayor Sadiq Khan described London as “a powerhouse of music,” with artists such as Adele, Stormzy, and Dua Lipa emerging from the city in recent years.

“For London to maintain its status as a global capital of music, it’s vitally important that we support the stars of tomorrow,” Khan said.

“Busking helps emerging artists to hone their talent and gives them the chance to perform in front of huge numbers of people.”

The mayor said the new scheme meant more people would now be able to show their support for the capital city’s many street performers.

Charlotte Campbell is one such busker who’s been helping to trial the project. The musician set her reader so that each transaction results in a payment of two British pounds, equivalent today to about $2.65.

Campbell said that if street performers don’t move with the times and embrace modern payment methods, “we’re at risk of becoming a dying art.”

After two weeks of trying out the electronic payments system, she said it had “already had a significant impact on the contributions I’ve received.”
Campbell said she’s noticed how when one person taps to donate, others who witness the act often follow suit, suggesting people are more than willing to adopt the new way of rewarding buskers.

Emerging Tech

First, it was San Francisco. Now, the U.K. is fighting facial recognition

The U.K.'s first legal battle over police use of facial recognition has kicked off. The case involves a citizen who alleges the tech was used against him in a breach of his privacy.

Kick off summer 2019 with these Fujifilm Instax instant camera bundle deals

Looking for an instant film camera by Fujifilm? These upgraded instant mini cameras will inspire you to use an instant camera to take selfies. We've rounded up a list of some of the best instant cameras by Fujifilm on Amazon.

Bosch sensors used in Skywalker’s lightsaber will keep flying taxis in the air

Bosch wants to help companies make flying taxis a reality. Aviation technology is too big and too expensive to power a flying taxi, so the German firm is developing a universal control unit using smaller, cheaper sensors already used in…
Emerging Tech

The moon is shrinking as it loses heat, new images reveal

New research suggests the Moon is shrinking. NASA scientists have used data from their Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter Camera to look at wrinkles in the surface of the Moon which are formed as it loses heat and shrinks in size.

Apple iPad and iPad Pros get big discounts for Memorial Day weekend

Apple iPads have been getting a lot of great discounts so far this year, and Memorial Day 2019 proves to be no exception. With prices as low as $249 for newer models, Memorial Day weekend is a great time to pick one up.

Lyft’s wallet-friendly Shared Saver option arrives in six more U.S. cities

Lyft is expanding its wallet-friendly Shared Saver option to Atlanta, Las Vegas, Miami, Philadelphia, San Francisco, and Seattle after launching it earlier this year in Denver, New York City, and San Jose.

Huawei's situation in the U.S. may improve when trade war is resolved

The U.S. Commerce Department has added Huawei to its "Entity List." Google, Intel, and ARM are all confirmed or rumored to be ceasing business with the company, which may have disastrous effects on Huawei.

You can't fool us -- this is definitely the Moschino Honor 20 Pro phone

Honor has launched the Honor 20 Pro and the Honor 20 at an event that took place in London. The new smartphone is surprisingly compact, with an impressive four-lens camera for taking stunning shots, day or night.

Amazon Memorial Day sale: Apple Watch, Surface Pro, and 4K TV Deals

Amazon is discounting a number of different items. Smartwatches, tablets, 4K TVs, smart home devices, and laptops are all getting discounts to stay competitive with prices from Walmart and Best Buy.

Best Memorial Day sales 2019: Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart drop discounts

If you're looking to save big on some shiny new stuff for Memorial Day 2019, we've gathered everything you need to know into one place. Find out where to save the most money before the summer hits its stride.

The 20 best iPhone SE cases to keep your phone looking like new

Protect your iPhone properly with one of the best iPhone SE cases or covers. That metal-and-glass body is prone to scuffs and scratches, so it pays to buy a decent case. We've got protective and stylish options for you here.
Emerging Tech

The best solar chargers for your phone, tablet, and other battery-powered gear

Looking for a gizmo that can help you charge your phone while on the go? Here, we've outlined the best solar chargers on the market, whether you're looking to charge your phone once, twice, or three times over.
Product Review

Garmin’s Forerunner 245 Music is all a runner needs to measure performance

Garmin's new Forerunner 245 fitness watch offers advanced metrics, onboard color maps and music. Is this trio a winning combination? We put the watch through its paces to find out.

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for May 2019

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals for…