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Apple’s new Tap to Pay turns iPhones into payment terminals

Apple tap to pay

Businesses will soon be able to take contactless payments via iPhone thanks to a new feature Apple is rolling out to its smartphones.

Apple says it is targeting millions of merchants in the US with Tap to Pay, which will be launched as part of an upcoming iOS software beta. The feature will allow businesses to take payments for goods or services through Apple Pay, contactless credit and debit cards, and other digital wallets on an iPhones XS or later model.

“As more and more consumers are tapping to pay with digital wallets and credit cards, Tap to Pay on iPhone will provide businesses with a secure, private, and easy way to accept contactless payments and unlock new checkout experiences using the power, security, and convenience of iPhone,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet. “In collaboration with payment platforms, app developers, and payment networks, we’re making it easier than ever for businesses of all sizes — from solopreneurs to large retailers — to seamlessly accept contactless payments and continue to grow their business.”

Apple’s default position often seems to be a walled garden in terms of its services and ecosystem, so its interesting that the Tap to Pay will be made open to other payment platforms and developers to integrate into their apps. The first to get involved is US payment platform Stripe which will see the feature included in its the Shopify Point of Sale app and elsewhere this spring. Apple says more payment platforms and apps will follow later this year.

“Whether you’re a salesperson at an internet-first retailer or an individual entrepreneur, you can soon accept contactless payments on a device that’s already in your pocket: your iPhone,” said Billy Alvarado, Stripe’s chief business officer. “With Tap to Pay on iPhone, millions of businesses using Stripe can enhance their in-person commerce experience by offering their customers a fast and secure checkout.”

People aren’t exactly blown away with new models of smartphone anymore – iPhones in particular feel like incremental updates rather than the mould shattering disruptors of the Steve Jobs days. And with the general quality of smartphones arriving at something like a standard at the top end, how integrated an Android or iOS feature is to your life or business could become far more relevant to future purchases than the differences in hardware.

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