Two million people are now using Barclays PINGIT, Terence Trench confirmed at the Pinsent Masons’ Global Payments Conference in London today. Payments of over £30,000 have been made using PINGIT.
Two-thirds of PINGIT users were aged over 25 years, Trench, the PINGIT product manager at Barclays, said, with only a 6% weighting towards London and the South East. “You’re as likely to be using PINGIT in Liverpool as you are Liverpool Street [London},” he said.
To date, people have been using PINGIT to pay for the deposit on house purchases, with payments of £27,000 and £30,000 being made.
Importantly, and perhaps not surprisingly, with 3% of the UK population using PINGIT Trench believes this acts as “a demonstrator that there is a material percentage of people that want this service on their phones,” and not just Barclays customers, referencing the Paym initiative.
Nevertheless, he says that the window opportunity is much smaller and slower in sophisticated markets like the UK, because advanced payment systems are already deeply ingrained in society.
He said that payments today in the UK, from credit and debit cards, to cheque books, work on an antiquated, paper-based model that is decades old. But, it is tried and trusted.
And as Trench noted, if one credit card fails, we automatically rely on another credit card. “Consumers can fly anywhere in the world and buy something knowing that if that system failed they could rely on something else that is exactly the same.”
But it is the smartphone that is driving what he calls the “Push” model, whereby the core banking system is opened up to become a central payment system in its own right.
“In the UK we have the FASTER payment system, but the user experience is awful because the recipient needs your banking details,” he said. “Smartphones bring unique advantages because with a push payment, you don’t need to expose banking details to third party, and vice versa, and the user can immediately push the money.
“Mobile makes the process user friendly, you can connect directly with your bank with your app. The average app design cycle is 6 weeks, while plastic cards in [your wallet] are updated every 3 years.”