Anyone else feel cynical about Apple Pay?

Discussion in 'Apple Music, Apple Pay, iCloud, Apple Services' started by tmiw, Aug 18, 2015.

  1. tmiw macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #1
    I have an iPhone 6 and an Apple Watch and have been using Apple Pay for a while. At the retailers officially accepting it, it's awesome; I've had almost no problems using it at those places. I've also ordered stuff online through the phone with it and it works as you'd expect. At most of the places that aren't official retailers but have NFC readers, it works too.

    And that's the problem, really--there's still simply not enough places that accept it. On one hand, based on MasterCard's site, the number of acceptance locations has gone up over time. However, some places have gone backwards and disabled it without any specific reason (Home Depot comes to mind). Even at the places that supposedly accept it, most clerks either have no idea how to turn on the NFC reader or have the terminal somewhere that's inaccessible to customers. I don't consider that "supporting" Apple Pay or any form of contactless payment at all.

    I don't think the October deadline that has been mentioned multiple times in the past is going to be a panacea either. As we've seen, Target enabled chip but not NFC even though they're supposedly no longer under MCX's exclusive contract. The screens at my local Vons (aka Safeway) only say "insert or swipe" with no mention of tapping, even though their new readers supposedly have the hardware support for it. I would not be surprised if a whole lot of retailers suddenly start accepting chip but not NFC in a few months.

    It's simple to dismiss all of this as growing pains, but I honestly don't think most retailers in the US want to support anything that makes paying by card easier. Why else would stuff like CurrentC get even a tenth of the attention that it has thus far? Or why a lot of merchant providers seemingly aren't training their business clients on their new terminals? And why even some places that support NFC make using it way more inconvenient than it should be.

    I don't know what Apple should have done in hindsight, or if they even could have done anything differently. Would they have just skipped the US and come back to it at some later date, if at all? Should they have put their own cash into upgrading retailers in advance of the initial release? Perhaps buy LoopPay before Samsung got a chance and use their MST technology to work around the retailers stonewalling?

    Hopefully I'm wrong and October does make the situation a lot better, but IMO it's not looking good thus far.
     
  2. BWhaler macrumors 68020

    BWhaler

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2003
    #2
    Not at all. I love Apple pay, use it daily.

    For me, Apple Pay represents the best software, cloud solution, and complete experience Apple has shipped in years. It is truly Old School Apple.
     
  3. Rigby macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2008
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    #3
    I share your concern about the lack of retailer support, but when it comes to CurrentC keep in mind that it came along long before Apple Pay was announced (the consortium was launched in 2012). At the time, Apple Pay wasn't an alternative. CurrentC may still be a good thing in the end, as it was probably a factor for Apple to start working on integrating support for loyalty cards, which should make some retailers happy.
    Give it some time. Mobile payments are still in their infancy.
     
  4. tmiw thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #4
    While good, there are at least a few that aren't satisfied with having an opt-in method of tracking their customers. I don't know how much of that Walmart currently does but I wouldn't be surprised if they were. Walmart's motivation for CurrentC seems to be more of a hatred of Visa and MasterCard than anything else though; if it was simply about the fees they'd just surcharge and/or add minimums for card use (since those are allowed now), or even become cash/debit only.

    In general I feel there's more resentment of Visa/MC here by the business community than in other countries. Some businesses accept cards only reluctantly and deny the benefits of cards that they themselves receive, mainly saving money and time that would have otherwise gone towards dealing with cash. Others, though fewer than there used to be, are still stubbornly cash only and feel they'd rather have 4-5 signs all over the store saying such than to listen to their customers' wants.

    I would love to look back on this thread a few months/year from now and realize that I was completely wrong, that Apple Pay became accepted nearly everywhere that was accepting chip-enabled cards and ideally didn't require having the clerk push a button or few on their end to turn on the NFC reader after totaling everything out. But that point very well could take much longer than even Apple themselves anticipated too.

    "Anyone else feel cynical about Apple Pay's eventual acceptance?" would probably be a better subject line for this post, now that I think about it some more. The technology itself and its implementation on Apple's end is sound; it's more of the merchant side that I'm worried about.
     
  5. Rigby macrumors 601

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    Aug 5, 2008
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    #5
    Assuming you mean the US when you write "here", it's actually one of the most credit-card-friendly countries in my experience. Retailers in Europe in particular are much more hostile toward credit cards (only debit cards are widely accepted).
     
  6. tmiw thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2007
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #6
    Yeah, I meant the US in my posts.

    Anyway, credit might be more commonly accepted because our national debit networks are pretty much Visa and MasterCard. (There are others but those are way more common at ATMs than for purchases and tend to be regional in nature.) I imagine things might be a bit different if there was a US equivalent to, say, Australia's EFTPOS or Canada's Interac.
     
  7. Noble Actual macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2014
    #7
    That's the major problem from me.

    Just because a store uses Apple Pay vs one that doesn't, I'm not going to change my entire lifestyle just for Apple Pay.

    - Can walk to CVC in 3 minutes vs driving to Walgreens (15 mins away)

    - Buy groceries at Costco vs spending more money at Whole Foods

    Until Apple Pay and mobile payments actually becomes widespread in major stores (Costco, Walmart, Target, Safeway) and places like (gas stations, movie theaters, parking meters, sport stadiums, etc.), it remains a nice gimmick that will occainsily do nothing more but woo the cashier who thinks you either 1) hacked their machine 2) think your a genius

    My issue isn't really at Apple Pay and it seems to be a great feature, its the idea that I have get out of my way for Apple Pay to work. Apple Pay should instead do that job and make it easier.
     

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