O2 has launched a new app that allows users to transfer up to £500 via their smartphone, and plans to introduce contactless phone payments shortly.
You can transfer money from one account to another free of charge via a text message – although O2 has stated that it intends to introduce a charge of 15p for sending money via the service at some point in the future.
More than 100 retailers have already signed up to the O2 scheme, including Comet, Debenhams, Sainsbury’s Direct and Tesco Direct. O2 has confirmed that it is in talks with a rail operator to add a facility for buying train tickets.
To use the app, you can upload money to your O2 Wallet account via a debit card, text message or cash at selected locations including O2 stores, PayPoint and epay retail outlets. There’s an audit trail of expenses available for budgeting purposes, and users of the text payment service will also be able to compare the price of goods before buying.
Contactless phone payments coming soon
The next initiative O2 has planned will enable people with mobile phones that have near-field communication (NFC) chips imbedded to make contactless payments in high street shops. The contactless payment function won’t be available until enough retailers have signed up to the scheme.
Secure money transfers
O2 does not believe that security concerns should hold back ‘mobile wallets’, as all personal and financial data, including Pin codes, will be held on remote servers and not on phones.
O2 Money’s managing director James Le Brocq said: ‘O2 wallet has been trialled internally for months and has undergone extensive stress testing with security experts. This is, we believe, the safest and most secure way to deliver mobile payment services.’
- Mobile phones – how to choose the best smartphones
- Best credit cards – find the best credit cards for spending
- – what you are entitled to when shopping