Starting the global rollout of its next card reader, the Card Reader Pro Contactless
iZettle has announced it is the first major mobile payments company to offer small businesses a card reader that enables contactless payments and supports the long awaited Apple Pay.
Starting today, iZettle’s new contactless card reader, the Card Reader Pro Contactless, is being distributed to select partners across the UK, followed by a wider launch on 1 June.
Contactless payments have been a hot topic in the payments industry for years, but iZettle said it is only recently that consumers have started to fully embrace the technology. In the UK, where contactless payments are by far the most levied in Europe, the number of contactless payments hit 319 million in 2014, a 220% increase year on year.
A major development for contactless payments in the near future will be the expansion of payment apps for mobile devices, like Apple Pay, that use near field communication (NFC) to make secure transactions. iZettle’s new reader also supports other mobile payments apps, such as Google Wallet.
“Apple really nailed it with Apple Pay, both for the new Watch and the iPhone 6. Paying with Apple Pay is nothing short of an extraordinary user experience,” says Jacob de Geer, iZettle’s CEO and co-founder. “Having tried Apple Pay, I’m convinced this service will spur a shift in payment behaviour away from plastic, and I can’t wait for Apple to roll out this service to markets outside of the US.
“Since the advent of the smartphone, we have all been longing to move on from both cards and cash. We all imagine a world where wallets are left home, where a simple swipe of a phone or a watch is all what it takes,” added de Geer. “We’re now getting there. contactless payments offer unparalleled ease of use for consumers, and vastly increased transaction speed for merchants.”
Separately on Tuesday, iZettle is introducing its service in France, the company’s eleventh market to date. The French market has high card payment usage and a high density of small and micro sized businesses, many of whom have previously been unable to accept card payments in a convenient manner.