About to test Apple Pay at the local Walgreens. Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac
Critics are fond of saying Apple doesn’t innovate any more. But Apple’s new electronic payment system, Apple Pay, is innovation of the highest order. After a relatively smooth rollout this week, I honestly believe Apple Pay is the future of payments.
Even so, Apple Pay must clear some big hurdles if it’s to become the universal standard. For now, it’s limited to Apple’s latest iPhones and a relatively small number of retail partners, but the basic system — using your fingerprint to validate a purchase on your mobile phone — is the way we will pay for goods and services in the future.
Once again, Apple has shown the world how things should be done.
Apple’s first major iOS 8 seeded to developers this week contained clues that Apple Pay is nearly ready for launch, and according to a report from Bank Innovation, we won’t have to wait much longer to replace our wallets with the new mobile payments solution.
The finishing touches are still being made to the security features in Apple Pay, but the report claims that the official release is tentatively scheduled for the third monday of October.
Apple Pay is threatening to put mobile payments companies like Square and PayPal out of business when it launches next month, but according to Square co-founder Jack Dorsey, Apple Pay isn’t actually a threat to his company.
Dorsey revealed yesterday that Square is hoping to use Apple Pay to its advantage by building a new register for sellers that accepts Apple Pay and pretty much every other form of payment you can slide across a counter.
Apple’s insistence on secretive behavior is well known. When it came to entering mobile payments with Apple Pay, that veil of secrecy didn’t drop for a second — with Apple insisting on some pretty stringent security measures, despite dealing with some of the giants of finance.
The code-name it chose for one of its partners on the project might strike you as a bit familiar, however — since it was later re-used as the name for Apple’s latest iteration of OS X.
“Our first code-name was Yosemite,” Barry McCarthy, president of Financial Services at FirstData, told me in an interview. “Later on when we found out that was also the name Apple had selected for its new OS, we changed it to Project Acadia, after another U.S. national park. We weren’t allowed to use or even say the name of the technology company we were working with — which was of course Apple.”
Apple finally added NFC to the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, but if you were hoping that the company’s new NFC chip will allow you to pair speakers or integrate NFC tags into your favorite apps, you’ll have to keep waiting. Apple has put its NFC chip on lockdown, at least for now.
Sources at Apple have confirmed to Cult of Mac that the NFC chip on the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus will only be used for Apple Pay when it launches this week.
Apple Pay’s ease of use may lead to increased impulse buying — and that’s exactly what Apple’s hoping for.
More and more retailers are already using NFC terminals, but there is an additional reason why those without them might want to hurry up and get onboard: because Apple Pay could lead to more impulse purchases.
That at least seems to be the rationale of Walt Disney World, according to a new report.
A partnership with Walt Disney World was announced on Tuesday, and as per About.com theme park expert Arthur Levine, Disney is convinced it’s going to prove a great way of upping the amount customers will spend.
“It is surely hoping that by giving visitors the ability to use its cash-less system anywhere across the Disney World campus, they will increase spending, especially on impulse purchases,” Levine says.
For the second consecutive year, Apple has delivered not one but two new iPhones. Unlike the iPhone 5c, however, the slightly cheaper model this time around isn’t just an old iPhone inside a new shell. The iPhone 6 has the same A8 processor, the same Touch ID fingerprint scanner, and the same improved iSight camera as the iPhone 6 Plus.
So, is size the only difference, and how do you choose which model is right for you? Our in-depth comparison below will help you compare each device — spec for spec, feature for feature — and decide which one most deserves a place in your pocket for the next 12 months.
Apple is widely rumored to unveil a new NFC-based mobile payments service tied into the iPhone and iWatch later today.
But there’s a problem. In the aftermath of the Fappening, the massive iCloud breach that leaked nude and pornographic images of Jennifer Lawrence, Kate Upton and more, it’s bad timing. Apple’s name is synonymous in the news with security breaches right now. People may not want to trust the company with their financial data if Apple can’t even protect the nudes of celebrities.
So maybe Apple shouldn’t push payments during today’s big event. Or at least not at first. Maybe Tim Cook should apologize instead.
Apple could use both NFC and tokenization as part of its mobile payments drive.
In addition to near field communication (NFC) as part of its mobile payments drive, Apple will be incorporating something called “tokenisation” technology, according to sources who spoke with Bank Innovation.
As the report explains, “Financial institutions — card issuers and networks — prefer token technology because it replaces primary account numbers, those 16-digit card numbers on the front of credit and debit cards. Instead, the tokenization technology uses complex codes that are easily transmittable over the air and between devices, but that are used only once, so even if they are intercepted, are of no use to fraudsters.”
Apple has been investigating tokenization technology for several years, with multiple patents relating to the process dating back as far as 2009.