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MasterCard wristwatch to let users make payments

MasterCard customers in the U.K. will soon be able to make payments by tapping their wristwatch against a contactless reader.

MasterCard recently announced its plans to team up with watchmaker LAKS and electronic money issuer Vincento Payment Solutions to develop the product, which is called Watch2pay, BankTech.com reports.

“Since we introduced contactless to the world nearly a decade ago, we've been driving innovation in Tap & Go payments, with nearly 100 million PayPass cards and devices now issued globally,” Matt Lanford, the head of prepaid at MasterCard Europe, said. “We're maintaining that momentum by working with Vincento and LAKS to bring together prepaid and contactless payments in a wristwatch for the very first time in the U.K., offering consumers a safe, simple and smart way to pay for everyday items."

Watch2pay is funded through a prepaid account that activates MasterCard’s PayPass technology. Customers who wear the watch are able to purchase as much as 1£ at more than 70,000 retailers throughout the U.K. without having to enter a PIN.

The new watch will come with a reloadable prepaid card from MasterCard that is not hooked up to a bank account or to any line of credit, BankTech.com reports. The card does not expire until two years after it is activated and is accepted at more than 32 millions retailers worldwide.

Contactless wristwatches are already being used to make payments in countries such as Turkey and Poland, as well as several markets in Asia.

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