This morning I hadn’t experienced the ‘beep’ and the brief elation that comes with tapping your phone on or near a credit card payment terminal. But by midday I was rocking.
I started out at Timpson, the shoe repair people. I needed to buy some shoelaces and thought this would be a reasonably safe place (i.e. not many queues) to check out the process. I had no idea how the phone and the payment technology worked. Do you have to ‘run’ the app at the same time? (No) Do you need to keep the phone’s screen active? (No) Does it still work if your phone is in lock screen mode? (Yes)
Here’s the video of me introducing what I’m about to do…
And then I walked into the shop.
The chap behind the counter wasn’t particularly stressed or busy so when I asked if I could “try paying with my phone” he readily agreed. We both watched as he typed in £3 on to the card terminal and then I touched my phone on the reader. In what felt like less than a second, the reader changed display to “APPROVED” and a receipt printed out. That satisfied the chap. On my phone I noticed a little window had popped up telling me I’d just spend £3.
I walked out the store with my shoelaces feeling brilliant.
The ability to not have to mess about with anything other than your phone — which is invariably in your hand or very nearby anyway — is just fantastic.
Here’s my summary moments after I’d left the shop: