Paypal is trialling a mobile app that enables users to make purchases in shops and restaurants using their name and profile rather than handing over debit, credit cards or cash.
Users, having uploaded their details, can see from the app where PayPal payments are accepted. They must check-in with the relevant retailer so that when they come to pay, the sales assistant will see their image on the payment system. The sales assistant clicks on the user’s image to charge them. Users then receive a notification on their phone, as well as an electronic receipt.
However, users must still enter their PayPal password at the start of the transaction, according to one report, so reducing the time-saving in the process.
Initially, PayPal is only running a trial with about a dozen retailers, bars and a hotel near its UK offices in Richmond, south west London. The plan is for a wider rollout in the UK.
Visual check-out, with the promise of reducing the time taken for payment processing, is currently generating a lot of interest around the world.
Similar systems are already in use in other countries, including the US.
The PayPal app is available for iOS, Android and Window Phone devices.