Will Apple Pay Succeed or Not?

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Will Apple Pay become a success?  The service which launched on Monday has clearly benefited from a great deal of hoopla online.  The service is relatively easy to use.  You just add your credit cards and then at check out, you can simply tap your card on the Apple Pay reader machine and it will spit out a receipt.  Will this change the future of how we pay for products at the store?  Will it render the credit card obsolete?  It’s important to realize that prior attempts to do mobile wallet have failed, and that includes google wallet, as well as ISIS payments which was a a joint venture between the carrier networks ATT, Verizon and TMobile.

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Currently Apple Pay works only in certain locations.  Its been unrolled in both Walgreens as well as McDonalds.  Naturally, knowing that I would be doing a post on this topic, I went to both Walgreens and McDonalds to try out exactly how easy it was.  The result?

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It was really easy. In fact, I would even say it was fun.  To get my applepay set up, I was asked to input information from my credit cards. After that, my credit cards were automatically added into my passbook app.  When I went to Walgreens, I purchased a couple bags of snacksized potato chips and a diet Snapple.  The person working the register seemed relatively aware of ApplePay and told me to put my phone over the ApplePay censor, while holding my thumb on the thumprint scanner. A few seconds later, a receipt was spit out and my purchase was completed.  This actually saved many minutes at my Walgreens checkout and I had no difficulties with the service. I tried it out again at McDonalds. I was slightly worried that McDonalds would not have smooth Apple Pay system given some stories I’ve read in the past, including a post that went viral across the internet about how awkward it was to use Apple Pay throughout McDonalds drive thrus

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But to my happy surprise, I found the process of ordering a double cheeseburger and small fries at the Golden Arches to be relative smooth and easy, just as it was in Walgreens.  I did however have to get my receipt and wait for my order, so it was as smooth as I would have liked it to be.

Apple Pay has gotten a lot of press recently about whether it will be a success or not. And how much Apple stands to gain from Apple Pay.  If Apple gets a percentage of every transaction that people purchase using Apple Pay, then Apple wins big, with increasing revenues.  Apple Pay definitely has gotten a lot of press in the news, and the backing of giant that understands how to launch new services.  But will it catch on? Or will go the way of ISIS and Google Wallet which were not successes because of the fact that they were easy to use.

In my opinion I think Apple Pay will catch. I have used Google Wallet and from my experience Apple Pay is a much easier checkout experience. In fact, I find myself wanting more stores to carry Apple Pay to reduce my time at the check out cashier.

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But ApplePay clearly is having some difficulties getting retailers to come on board.  For example, CVS which began testing Apple Pay earlier in the week, began rejecting transaction this week.  Internet rumors suggest this is a result of business considerations. Do they feel they are giving away to much of a percentage of purchase transactions to Apple?  There are also rumors that Rite Aid and other retailers are developing a rival wallet application to Apple Pay.  The rival wallet could be backed by retailing giants like Best Buy, Walmart and Target.

That certainly does not bode well for the future of Apple Wallet.

So while Apple Pay, from my personal perspective was a seemless, simple and even fun way to purchase items.  The future of whether Apple Pay may not be on whether it can offer consumers a great experience, but whether it can gain the support of large retailers.  Clearly if retailers begin disabling Apple Pay, it simply will not survive.

Only time will tell.

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