Expansion of Apple Pay
More and More Ways to use Apple Pay
Toward the end of 2014, Apple Pay became available. It allowed users to upload their credit card details into their digital wallet, and then to pay for goods and services using near field communication. This new payment method (which is available with both iOS and Android devices) helps to streamline the payment process.
Now, after a little over three years on the market, Apple Pay is seeing some big improvements. It’s not just for a speedier checkout at the grocery store. There are a number of different ways to transfer money without actually touching a card, or money.
Apple Pay Cash
Most of the major tech companies are allowing users to transfer money using their software. Facebook has had this ability for quite a while; you can send payments through messenger. So when your deadbeat brother is worried about having his power shut off, you can send him money with a couple taps of a button. Not that you would; but you could.
Apple Pay ATM
Bank of America, and now Wells Fargo, offer Apple Pay at many of their ATM’s across the country. The most recent data says that there are over 5,000 Wells Fargo ATM’s that let you use your iPhone or Apple Watch to withdraw cash. How many of those are in Billings? We couldn’t find a map that showed the locations. But sources say roughly 40% of the Wells Fargo ATM’s are near field communication enabled, with the other 60% expected to transition by the end of 2019.
Apple Pay Gas Station
While using a card in the store really isn’t all that much harder than waving your phone over the reader; paying for gas is another thing. Most of us don’t want to go into the gas station, so we swipe our card at the pump. That’s been around for decades. But card readers at the pump are notorious for people skimming your information, so many of us don’t want to risk it. Waving your phone or your watch in front of an integrated machine, and suddenly no payment worries. Easy to do on Exxon’s enabled machines; more are likely to follow in the next couple of years.
Not at All Locations
When Apple Pay launched in 2014, there were roughly 200,000 locations accepting it. As of about a year ago that number had surged to over 2 million. Give it another couple of years, and you will be hard pressed to find somewhere that doesn’t have an Apple Pay enabled payment device. In fact, most are so integrated that when they do have the older equipment, there are now signs that say “We DON’T accept Apple Pay”; as opposed to just a couple of years ago when the signs indicated that they do.
Digital Currency is the Norm
Whether you pay with a card or with your device, you’re using digital currency. The only difference is whether you want to speed up the process and get rid of carrying your card everywhere (for those times you forget your wallet, but you will never forget the phone!).
There is still room for a lot of improvement (think parking meters, vending machines, coin-op Laundromats, and more), but the world runs electronically. If your payment initiator is broken, bring it on in and we’ll get it working again so you can go back to purchasing with your phone instead of that archaic piece of plastic with a magnetic strip.