Got a credit card? Got an Apple product that computes? You’re probably eligible to use Apple Pay and there are more locations available all over the country and other countries, too. But I read Apple Pay was dead.
Nope. Sorry. Not dead. Pay no attention to that technology deprived writer, a members all of the technorati elite politburo and card carrying members of the nattering nabobs of negativism club. Whatever you read about Apple Pay’s failures in the past was wishful thinking from critics who will write anything to grab your attention, knowing all the while that what they wrote will be forgotten.
I just don’t have enough room on my Calendar to track them all.
The Long Game
There are times we may wonder why Apple takes its good old sweet time to upgrade various products (Mac mini, I’m looking at you!), and why Apple sells what really are old products that should be retired as new products (think iPhone SE, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus, iPhone 7s, and iPhone 7 Plus– all available today, all products from yesteryear that Apple sells as if they were new).
Apple plays a long game and never is that more clear than with Apple Pay. Retail payment methods are suffering from fragmentation so most of us have a variety of credit cards and even more payment methods. There’s Android Pay, Samsung Pay, Amazon Payments, and others, but mobile and contactless payment systems have been around for many years; most of them outside the good old U.S. of A.
Apple Pay is one of many, but unlike many, Apple Pay is drop dead simple to use and more secure than other devices. The former explains why it is growing quickly and used more than others, and the latter might explain why some merchants still don’t use it. Apple Pay does not let merchants track you. Here’s why merchants, despite their inability to capture sales information about you and tied to whatever you bought, sign up to use Apple Pay. Customers love using it. Where Apple Pay is available it dominates; typical Apple, but in this case about 90-percent of mobile contactless transactions where Apple Pay is a choice.
Apple Pay dead? I don’t think so.
Here’s why. Apple Pay can be used in the top 20 largest and most wealthy countries (those that spend money using credit cards). Almost three out of four credit card transactions are carried out in those top 20 countries where Apple Pay is available. More than 4,000 credit card issuers accept Apple Pay. In the U.S. half of all retail locations that use contactless systems accept Apple Pay, and more than two-thirds of the country’s top retailers.
Why has Apple Pay become a hit? Actually, let me ask, “Why is Apple Pay a hit while similar competitors are not?” Apple’s customers are better customers, use more technology, and integrate technology into their lives. We’re not necessarily early adopters as we are convenience adopters. Today I can walk into Macy’s and tap my Watch to pay. Whole Foods, too. Starbucks? Yep. Grocery stores and electronic gadget stores? Uh huh. Online. Of course.
Apple’s famed engineers and designed made Apple Pay easy to set up, easier to use, and more secure than other systems. Win, win, win. I can use it on my iPhone, iPad, Watch, and Mac. Do I run into retail locations or websites that do not accept Apple Pay? Yes. I don’t shop there as often. Amazon’s Rewards credit card supports Apple Pay but Amazon does not, and outside of PayPal, Amazon Payments comes in at #2, well ahead of Apple Pay. Just remember that they are different payment methods. Unlike Amazon, which makes a living tracking your movements online, Apple is gadget-based and does not allow retailers to track specific customers.
Apple Pay dead? No. It’s thriving and growing thanks to Apple’s insistence upon playing a long game, and coming soon is Apple peer-to-peer payments where you can give money to others right from your iPhone.