Apple brings tap-and-go payments to London’s Tube

Apple said it has upgraded its payments system, allowing customers faster journeys across London’s trains, buses and trams.

The US tech giant said users no longer need to authenticate payments with Face ID or Touch ID, but “just tap” their iPhone or Apple Watch on Transport for London’s yellow card reader to pass through its barriers.

The streamlined Express Mode system, which went live yesterday, copies networks Apple already has in place in New York, as well as some cities in Japan and China.

The move is a bid to head off complaints from mobile phone users about the slowness of Apple Pay compared to TfL’s own Oyster card.


Mobile device journeys

The new system also seeks to calm passenger fears about battery failure while travelling, leaving them unable to complete journeys. The firm said its iPhone XS or Apple Watch Series 4 devices or later devices, will work up to five hours after the red power reserve icon appears.

TfL head of transformation delivery Mike Tuckett said: “Almost 25 million journeys in and around London are now made using contactless every week, with one in five now made using a mobile device rather than a contactless card.”

Over three million passengers a day use London’s public transport network, adding up to over one billion journeys a year.





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Roger Baird

Roger Baird

Roger Baird is News Editor at Finixio. He has worked as a financial journalist for 20 years reporting on companies, capital markets and the UK economy.
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