Apple Pay is here. With activation right around the corner, banks and various companies are lining up to take advantage of the service. Is there really good reason to?
What Apple Pay is offering isn't exactly new. For a couple of years now, Google Wallet has been offering mobile payment services to Android users but it never got as much attention. Apple Pay isn't revolutionary but the way it is being implemented is smarter.
For starters, Apple Pay appears so attractive because Apple already has massive market to tap into, with a direct connection to 800 million users who have already connected their debit and credit cards to their iTunes accounts.
Apple Pay is also not out to compete with banks and companies offering payment services. Instead, it's seeking collaborative relationships. It aims to become a dominant player, yes, but not necessarily by disrupting existing setups.
But maybe it's also because Apple Pay is easy to use. Services are only really effective if people use them. Apple made it easy for users to set up and use the payment service, making it likely that they'll actually use it. Again, Apple is connected to 800 million existing users and that number could grow. Even if just half of those use the service, Apple Pay would still have a significant subscriber base, and that's what everyone wants a piece of, really.
Many are indeed eager to bank on Apple Pay, but others are still treating it with reservation, much like any kind of new service. Why? For one, the infrastructure for the service is not ready. New point-of-sale systems will have to be adopted and that takes time. Upgrades can be expedited, most especially by bigger retailers, but it's likely that many will also drag the process out until kinks have been worked out.
Also, adoption will take time. Even the most rabid of Apple fanboys are creatures of habit. Years of card use are deeply ingrained so it's possible it may take years before consumers stop whipping out their wallets to get their cards.
And there's the fact that the service is only available on the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
Apple Pay still has to prove itself but one of its biggest strengths, if not its biggest, is that it is from Apple. The company knows how to make things work, plain and simple, and that reputation extends to Apple Pay.