Covid-19: Consumers reluctant to use touchscreens

Four out of five UK consumers will interact differently with publicly available technology relied upon by retailers, such as self-service checkouts and chip & PIN, as a result of the Covid-19 experience.

The survey by Foolproof also suggests that people will engage in online shopping more frequently than prior to the Covid-19 in order to avoid touching public surfaces. It found 20% of consumers will do more online grocery shopping online once the crisis has ended.

The survey revealed that in the last two weeks, 72% of people have either worn gloves or wiped down a public touch surface. Beyond the crisis, 48% of the respondents remarked they would use contactless payments where the limit allows while 25% said they will use cash machines less, and only when absolutely necessary.

Peter Ballard, co-founder of Foolproof said: “This survey clearly shows that people are now more averse to touching technology in light of the current pandemic than they were before. What’s more, there are strong indications that these attitudes may become more ingrained in our post Covid-19 future. This underscores the need for changes to future product and service design, and we need to accept that people will want to touch things far less than they are required to do now.”

This change in attitudes means retailers may have to look at replacing touchscreens, which are prominent in self-service check outs, with contactless technologies in order to encourage customers back to the store.

Barclaycard revealed last week that it had observed a rapid uptake of the new £45 contactless payment limit that was introduced in some stores last month.