Feeds

Bung a tenner to a mate's mobile number with new Barclays app

Just like PayPal but with phone numbers

Bridging the IT gap between rising business demands and ageing tools

PingIt is Barclays' answer to PayPal and its ilk, linking payments to a mobile-phone number instead of an email address but providing a banking brand to back them up.

Initially only those with a Barclays current account are able to make payments, but anyone with a UK bank can register their phone number to receive money - the transactions being addressed to a mobile number so bank account details aren't shared between payer and payee. Transfers should take about 30 seconds, and can be completed with a couple of taps on the screen.

The system is managed though mobile apps, which are available for iOS, Android and BlackBerry. There's also a website for those not equipped with the latest technology but who still want to get involved.

Right now the service is also just for individuals, though Barclays points out that might include "sole traders such as window cleaners or plumbers", so they can receive payments addressed to their mobile phone. The payments are capped at £300, so not too much plumbing, but should be enough to clean a few windows.

Payments are free to both parties, for the moment at least, but should the system prove popular then it seems likely that businesses will have to start paying just like they do for any other kind of transfer. There's no obvious advertising, but the app has asked us a couple of times if we'd like a free trial of Kaspersky's Android offering (as it had noticed we weren't running any security software) - it also refuses to run on "rooted" devices (which have been hacked to allow inter-app communications amongst other things) citing security issues.

Intriguingly the app's licence includes a reference to Google Maps and Google Earth (as well as the obligatory nod to the open-source crypto stack SSLeay) - presumably for the Barclays branch locator.

The bank reckons PingIt is ideal for friends and family wanting to transfer a tenner or two between them, and points out that the speed of transfers make it ideal. It's a market where PayPal would like to be, but one shouldn't underestimate the value of a trusted (even if not particularly liked) brand when it comes to underwriting mobile payments. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple ran off to IBM
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Samsung threatens to cut ties with supplier over child labour allegations
Vows to uphold 'zero tolerance' policy on underage workers
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
You! Pirate! Stop pirating, or we shall admonish you politely. Repeatedly, if necessary
And we shall go about telling people you smell. No, not really
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Reducing security risks from open source software
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.