Starling Bank customers in the United Kingdom who happen to have an Android device running OS version 4.4 KitKat or newer will soon be able to use Android Pay features with their mobile banking app. That's according to an announcement from the company which went live on Tuesday, stating that the latest functionality will go live shortly. Starling Bank is a Fintech-owned banking institution that supports mobile-only accounts, having originally debuted in the UK back in 2016. While the bank is obviously not the first to obtain integration with Android Pay, the company's COO, Julian Sawyer said that the company is excited to launch support for Google's service because it will help customers gain a "greater sense of financial freedom and control." Sawyer went on to say that it will also help the bank to speed up the way customers make payments with various retailers and businesses.
The most immediate implication of the new Android Pay integration, according to Starling Bank, is that users will be able to pay using NFC if their device has the appropriate hardware. Better still, users won't need to open either the banking application or the Android Pay one to do so. Moreover, as with all Android Pay-enabled bank accounts, the integration should improve overall security since the user's bank information is not given directly to a store in which it is used. Instead, Android Pay assigns accounts with a "virtual number" and transactions are completed through that number. Customers simply need to add their Starling Bank card through the Android Pay application itself. Beyond those benefits, Android Pay is integrated with a number of other services and may also soon allow for users to more easily add customer membership cards. Therefore, integration with Android Pay should be extremely helpful for Starling customers who want an easier way to access all of their money from a single application and make payments at stores in a much more streamlined fashion.
There's still no official date by which customers should expect to see the update go live for the application on their devices. However, as with all rollouts, the update should not take more than a few days to hit most end users. In the meantime, Starling Bank customers can check whether the update is already available for their smartphones by following the Google Play Store button below.