Why You Should Care If Apple Pay Comes To Websites

Why You Should Care If Apple Pay Comes to Websites

A report in Recode today suggests that Apple is planning to bring Apple Pay to websites later this year, which will let you buy stuff online with your iPhone. An incremental change to a marginally popular payment service doesn't sound exciting, but it's arguably the biggest payment move Apple has ever made.

Apple Pay online would be reasonably simple: on any participating website, hit 'pay with Apple Pay', and you'd get the same Touch ID prompt you do when trying to buy apps or music on a Touch ID-enabled iPhone or iPad.

There's a whole bunch of reasons why Apple Pay hasn't become universally accepted, but one thing always stands out when people are complaining about paying by phone: the time delay. It takes longer to pull out your phone and press the right buttons than it does to just swipe a card, so once the novelty wears off, people mostly forget that Apple Pay exists.

Online is a whole different thing. Every time you buy something from a new site, you're required to fill in all your credit card info and billing address by hand, which is a pain if you're trying to buy a five-pack of underwear. Anecdotally, the convenience of one-click purchases is the only reason I spend all my money on Amazon; that ease of purchase spread over the internet makes my bank account tremble.

Of course, companies have tried to make a universal payment system before, and PayPal has even succeeded somewhat. But even if a website supports PayPal, you have to log in (which takes time), using a passcode (which is unsecure). Apple Pay backed by TouchID would be faster, more secure, and have the added benefit that PayPal wouldn't get the chance to be a jerk.

[Recode]


Comments

    "There’s a whole bunch of reasons why Apple Pay hasn’t become universally accepted, but one thing always stands out when people are complaining about paying by phone: the time delay. It takes longer to pull out your phone and press the right buttons than it does to just swipe a card"

    There's no need to press any buttons, the reason for slow adoption (at least in the US) is for many reasons: upgrading POS systems, paying Apple a transaction fee, cross device compatibility - it's surprising how many Android or Windows Phone devices still are not secure enough to support NFC payments.

    You want to pay with Apple Pay? Pull out your phone, present it in front of the terminal and let your fingerprint do the rest. No need to press a button to wake the phone, no need to unlock the device (unless you've disabled payments from your unlocked device), and quite honestly it's much faster authorising the transaction than swiping a card.

    Personally I haven't tried Android Pay but I bet it's as effective as Apple Pay.

    IMHO Samsing pay was a blow to the payments industry setting it back preventing NFC from taking off as it should - merchants have no reason to upgrade terminals if the magnetic swipe works with the thousands of Android devices that are out there. It was the biggest mistake Samsung ever made.

    In Australia the reason it hasn't taken off is twofold:
    1) Tap to pay is already more mature than Apple Pay and Android Pay
    2) The banking model that is in place doesn't need to pay someone else to do something they can already do

    Some of the original reasons merchants were hesitant to start using tap to pay is because of the exorbitant costs a transaction would cost them meaning the purpose of tap to pay (quick small transactions) ended up being charged more that the return in the functionality that tap to pay gave them - believe me I've worked with my bank on this flaw.

    Click to pay on Amazon is fast but you have to share your financial details with Amazon which puts a lot more compliance requirements on Amazon - yes they should always be SOX compliant but it's still a high risk because something "might" happen.

    If, for example, BPAY offered a central payments option like Apple (perhaps make a consortium with other tech companies much like they do with the banks) a Touch ID and online payments system would be adopted more widely (at least in Australian markets) since the banks own their own integration into a platform that they also have a say in.

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