Apple Pay UK halted by nervous bankers

Apple Pay’s arrival in the UK is being delayed by concerns over data collection voiced by one of the country’s top banks that threatens to push the rollout back even further.

The contactless payment service is expected to hit the high street during the first six months of 2015 though the Daily Telegraph reports negotiations with one UK bank in particular have “proved tricky”.

It’s thought the bank in question is unhappy about the level of both personal and financial information Apple needs to collect about its customers, although the same source admitted that no major bank will want to opt out of Apple Pay. To add to the unease over data collection, it’s believed that certain banking executives are worried that Apple Pay and the data Apple collects could be a “beachhead for an invasion of the banking industry”.

Those sentiments were echoed in a recent report authored by consulting company McKinsey, which stated that payments account for 80 per cent of all customer interactions with their banks.

"It is nonbank attackers, ranging from large telecommunications companies to small and nimble technology players, that are defining the standards for digital banking," read the report, according to The Verge. "For now, the payments business remains squarely within the core bank franchise, but attackers such as Google, Apple, and PayPal threaten critical sources of revenue."

In Apple Pay’s first full month in the US in November it was responsible for one per cent of all digital payments, which compared favourably to Google Wallet’s four per cent share considering it has been in the market since 2011.

“This is a strong showing considering that the service is only available to Apple customers with the newest hardware and it is currently supported by a relatively limited list of merchants,” said ITG, the company responsible for those figures.

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