Would You Trust Apple with Your Wallet?

Yesterday, Apple introduced the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, and iWatch to its collection of consumer coveted products. While the hype primarily surrounded the iWatch, the first original product by Apple since 2010’s iPad, Tim Cook also introduced a mobile payment system that is an attempt by the company to combat the high rates of cyber crime occurring throughout the retail industry. The system, called ApplePay, wants to replace physical wallets with digital alternatives, causing concern among consumer finance official.

The system relies on chips embedded in the new iPhones and iWatches which will allow the user to wirelessly transmit financial payments.

What it’s Like to Pay with Apple Pay

Many agree Apple is in a strong position to offer a successful payment system due to its large network of partners (including leading banks and major retail chains) as well as the absolute control over its products’ hardware ad software. According to Tim Sloane, analyst at Mercator Advisory Group,

Apple’s control of hardware and software allow them to do a better job with technology than some of the things we’ve seen in the past.”

However, concerns over the ability of Apple to protect its customers’ finances have arisen from the critics citing the company’s failure to protect their celebrity clients’ property from hackers.

While ApplePay may not have been the focus of yesterdays unveiling, the potential it has to change both the retail and finance industries are massive. Both industries have struggled to keep up with recent technology, evident from the high frequency of hacks targeting retail chains such as Target and Home Depot. According to Cook, $12 billion is spent on credit and debit cards daily, totally approximately 200 million transactions.

That’s 200 million times that we scramble for our credit cards and go through what is a fairly antiquated payment process… Most people that have worked on this have started by focusing on creating a business model that was centered around their self-interest instead of focusing on the user experience. We love this kind of problem. This is exactly what Apple does best.”

ApplePay’s potential at this point is huge, especially taking into consideration the already failed attempts by Google to create a similar mobile wallet system. Despite this mass potential, Apple will need to be able to convince its consumers of the company’s ability to provide high security for such important, personal information. Apple’s focus has always primarily been on the consumer experience (ease of use, efficiency, style). Upon embarking on such a reaching goal, the company will need to ensure that consumer trust and protection become incorporated as measurements for success.

 

Read more here-  “With Apple Pay, the Tech Leader Takes a Shot at Replacing the Wallet,” (Craig Timberg and Danielle Douglas, The Washington Post)

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Olivia is a graduate of Villanova University where she studied Economics and History, minoring in Gender and Women's Studies. She also has experience working with federal legislatures on health care policy, women's issues, and Internet safety.

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