Costa Coffee has teamed with Barclaycard for the entertaining idea of turning a re-usable coffee cup into a contactless payment device. "Available in all Costa Coffee stores later this month, the Clever Cup costs £14.99, with a £1 donation from every sale going to the Costa Foundation. The cup has a silicon base with a contactless chip that can be detached for ease of washing," reports Finextra. "Owners can use the cup to make purchases in Costa, or anywhere else that accepts contactless payments. The cup is powered by Barclaycard's bPay technology, meaning that users can track their spending, top up their balance, and take control to block or cancel the contactless payment element online or using the dedicated app." Lafferty News can imagine scalding some unfortunate while trying to tap or wave a cup at a payment device, but nonetheless applauds the idea.
UK banks are offering versions of "the dog ate my homework" to regulators who are investigating the reasons behind recent catastrophic IT breakdowns. "As part of the lawmakers' announcement of their probe, they published the responses of banks that have suffered recent outages explaining what went wrong. A glitch that hit thousands of business and personal customers of Barclays on Sept. 20 was caused by 'a rare interaction between two software systems' that had been recently tweaked, Barclays Chief Executive Jes Staley said in a letter to Morgan," reports Reuters. "An unrelated outage that hit RBS customers the very next day was caused by 'incorrect implementation of a network firewall rule update,' RBS Chief Executive Ross McEwan said in a letter published by the Treasury Committee." Sorry, Jes, a "rare interaction between two software systems"? Were these pieces of software just out there roaming the technology landscape when this happened? Nothing to do with historical underinvestment in technology?
Australian banking has been doing its best to match the British, with a Royal Commission on banking lately uncovering a litany of failures among the big Australian banks. So it's not surprising to hear that a new digital-only bank is poised to take on the incumbents, and interesting too that the bank is emerging from payments business Cuscal. Speaking to pymnts.com, Cuscal's managing director Craig Kennedy says the banking idea grew out of the company's experience in B2B payments. The new bank, to be called 86 400, will operate separately from Cuscal and will seek its own banking licence. It is currently in beta. "Australia remains an ideal market for digital banking and mobile transactions, said Kennedy, noting that "we are a little bit different than some of the other markets because we went contactless so early." He stated, too, that high adoption rates of new payment methods remain high because that market is dominated by four banks -- with 80 percent of the market share in consumer banking -- and a handful of retailers."
Barclays and RBS scored three stars in the 2018 Lafferty Banking 500. The maximum score is five stars.
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