Android Pay in Poland in 3Q2016

It is official – Google has plans to introduce its mobile payment system Android Pay to Poland in the second half of 2016. The information was shared by Erika Wool from Google, who called Poland one of the company’s priority markets. Details are to be revealed in the summer.

The new system which allows customers to make contactless payments using a smartphone, is currently not available outside the United States. However, the Silicon Valley giant intends to expand it to other countries. The system will be implemented in the UK in the summer.

An Android Pay user, after downloading a dedicated app and adding their credit card information, may pay for their purchases with their mobile devices. The system uses NFC technology, which is already widely used for contactless payments in Poland. This means the seller makes use of the existing point of sale devices, so no new equipment needs to be introduced on the part of the merchant.

Poles are currently well acquainted with contactless payments. A large majority of cards in the hands have Polish bank clients have the contactless capacity. This method of payment have become very popular in Poland in the recent couple of years. Most of the shopkeepers allow contactless payments. Also, quite a lot of Polish people have a smartphone.

Will the new payment method become catch up? The developers’ idea is to turn our smartphones into wallets. There is no need to carry around cards or purses any more. A phone is something that a lot of people bring with them wherever they go.

Google assures their system is safe and secure. During a payment, card details are never released to the seller. Instead, sensitive information is replaced with a token. Each use of the mobile payment app needs to be authorized with an access code or a fingerprint, if possible.

The token is generated by card companies, such as Mastercard and Visa, which means the app user’s bank needs to have a special agreement for tokenization services. Some Polish banks have already expressed interest in being a part of the system.

Mobile payments are already available in Poland. There are two payments systems that have been introduced by Polish banks: Blik and HCE. The systems are used by clients of big Polish, such as Bank Millennium, mBank, Bank Pekao, BZ WBK, and PKO BP. It appears Blik is currently more widespread, but it is also more cumbersome to use, as it uses passwords for authorization.