Feeds

El Reg pays by phone – mmmm, free cookies!

Slow tap dance for UK's first contactless payments

The essential guide to IT transformation

Not waving but buying

The transaction itself was instant, the screen shown popping up next time we went into the Quick Tap application. Sadly the transaction didn't appear anywhere else – "recent transactions" still shows nothing and our remaining balance shows no money has been spent, despite the fact that we've eaten the cookies.

Screen shot showing receipt

Next time will be much quicker, for us and the staff.

Paying for things works really smoothly, but the supporting services – both registration and management – clearly need a lot of work. The Tocco isn't responsive enough to show off the applications, which themselves suffer from the J2ME platform on which they run. NFC payments are more likely to appeal to the kind of early adopters wielding Android and iOS handsets, but with only two Android handsets supporting NFC (the Nexus S and Galaxy S II) it is not mainstream enough for Orange to support – yet.

Concerns about security will also dog deployment, and despite the enormously complicated registration process, the credit card is still only protected by a four-digit PIN.

A thief can use your charged-up credit without being challenged – each transaction can be up to £15 and there isn't a limit on the number of transactions. Once that balance is exhausted the thief will get three guesses at the PIN, and will be able to transfer money from the credit card if the PIN is guessed.

Barclaycard will provide a tenner of additional credit for those prepared to adopt early, but it is notable that the Quick Tap application has plenty of space for other payment systems to be added (with one being identified as the "default" payment system so one can tap and pay without selecting a card).

It will be a few months before anyone else commits to using the system, and we're not convinced the infrastructure is quite ready yet despite the point-of-sale process working so well. Proximity payments from phones will happen, and Quick Tap is the first in the UK, but like most first movers it's more than a little rough around the edges. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
BT customers face broadband and landline price hikes
Poor punters won't be affected, telecoms giant claims
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
EE plonks 4G in UK Prime Minister's backyard
OK, his constituency. Brace yourself for EXTRA #selfies
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.