PayPal, the online payments service owned by eBay, is entering the UK mobile payments market with its own chip-and-pin service. The new service, called ‘PayPal Here’, makes it easier for small traders such as ice cream sellers, market stall holders and taxi firms to accept card payments through the chip-and-pin device. PayPal Here is aimed at smaller businesses which may find it costly to take card payments and have traditionally relied on cash or cheques.
The device is linked to an app on the traders’ smartphone which acts like a till. The pocket-sized device is set to be launched in the UK this summer and has been developed specifically for use in this country, where people are used to using chip and pin technology. PayPal Here will compete with similar services provided by iZettle and Payleven. IZettle, which launched in the UK in November with card and signature services, last week added chip and pin through a partnership with Banco Santander.
Although PayPal has begun trials in London of its new device, which connect wirelessly to the free PayPal app on Android and Apple smartphones, it has yet to confirm pricing ahead of the launch in summer. But speculations indicate an initial cost of under £100.
Paypal is offering the devices to a few select businesses before a full launch in the summer. PayPal Here will launch in the UK first with other countries to follow. In the US, PayPal has already brought out a similar device, a dongle that can be plugged into a mobile phone to act as a credit card reader.