Dutch banking group ING is trialling a new app, which converts Android smartphones, tablets or other smart devices into mobile points of sale (POS).

The bank tested the ‘Tap on Phone’ app in association with Mastercard.

The aim is to make payments easier as well as enable businesses to steer clear of the complexities associated with third-party providers.

The app leverages near-field communication (NFC) technology. Security concerns are addressed through encryption and cloud storage of data.

As a result, businesses will be able to track inventory and daily transactions in real-time.

ING project lead and merchant acquiring lead in the payments centre Abidin Gürsel Akbatur said: “ING is the first bank to pilot a software-based ‘tap on phone’ solution. The app is ideal for smaller businesses without a traditional checkout counter or for businesses with low transaction volumes which are often on the go.

“It empowers business owners to accept payments anytime and anywhere, without having to invest in expensive terminals.”

Currently, the app is being trialled by 200 businesses in Istanbul, Turkey.

As per Mastercard estimates, the development will benefit 1.5 million small-medium enterprises along with millions of other micro-businesses.

Plans are on to test the new app in more markets later on.