By Jim Scott
In June 2018 UK debit card transactions finally took over cash payments for the first time in a long battle between the two payment types. It was reported that British consumers used debit cards over 13 billion times in 2017 whereas the number of payments taken in cash fell 15 percent, The Guardian revealed.
But whilst UK debit card transactions have drastically increased over the years, contactless payments like Apple and Samsung Pay are helping experts measure the success of next-generation technology. But is Apple’s version of contactless really enough to be considered a success. After all isn’t it just like the others?
Apple introduced the "digital wallet" service in 2014 when the iPhone 6 was revealed to the public. The payment method meant even those customers without a contactless debit card, could still enjoy the benefits of the all-too-easy tapping of your card. Users double-click their side button and in theory, the iPhone unlocks using either a finger or complexion to authorise the payment.
Globally, the payment method has already outranked rival Samsung Pay. Around 77 percent of debit card transactions made on mobile phones have been on the Apple Pay platform.
Meanwhile, Samsung’s alternative Samsung Pay only amounts to 17 percent of the global market. Just this month, it was reported that Apple had claimed around 60 percent of US stores now accepted Apple Pay, which allows consumers to spend more than the average £30 found on contactless UK bank cards.
But some critics have said the platform may end up a failure. Cult of Mac suggested other platforms could block Apple Pay technology from many of its stores. It reports that bank merchants, developing their own tech, are not installing Apple Pay reader’s in stores they influence. Additionally, it was thought that company loyalty programmes where card details are "auto filled" for the customer could draw away from the overall success of Apple Pay.
Apple was also criticised for "forcing" iPhone users to add their bank cards to the Apple Pay app. The company have been seen to place a notification alert next to the settings menu of people’s iPhones, prompting users to follow the enroll process, as Business Insider reports.
But Apple Pay’s success is measured by the number of transactions cast and the overall adoption rates by business large and small, so it is not surprising that they have tried to get their following onboard.
Apple’s next big entry which is already launched in the US could be around the corner. Money transfer service, Apple Pay Cash is tipped for release in the UK on Apple’s next software update which will allow iPhone, iPad and Mac users to send money to other users without the need of online banking or calling up telephone banking. Instead the service will transfer money when initiated by the user.