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With the launch of Apple Pay this week, there has been a lot of talk about how the traditional wallet will soon be a “thing of the past”. For me, I just cannot see this being the case. Here are my reasons why:
- REACH – NFC chips are currently only embedded in iPhone 6 phones and Apple Watches.This leaves a huge portion of the country who do not have access to this technology and therefore will not and cannot use it.
- HISTORY – Electronic mobile phone payments are not a new technology. Samsung Pay and EE Cash On Tap are two that spring to mind. These have been openly available but are yet to take off. Also, Apple Pay in the USA hasn’t been as popular as was initially predicted.
- EASE OF USE – While Apple Pay will indeed make contactless payments faster, there are some stumbling blocks. For example, you still need to remove your phone and select which card you would like to use before you can pay.
- COVERAGE – Even though Apple have secured deals with large partners like Boots and TFL, they are still not going to be accepted everywhere. So, until this happens, people are still going to have to carry their wallets with them.
- HABIT – Humans are creatures of habit, and when we pay for items we naturally go for our wallet – not our phone. This means that Apple have a very tough job on their hands to convince us to break our habits – and I’m not sure people will change their ways.
- RISK – If you lose or break your phone (or it gets stolen) and you’re using Apple Pay, you’ve essentially lost your wallet, too. People won’t be willing to take this risk. It’s best to keep them separate, I think.
I believe that these reasons will result in a slow uptake of Apple Pay in the UK. Apple will, of course, claim this isn’t the case and that more and more retailers will sign up to it as time goes by. But until every shop accepts contactless payments there is no reason for anybody to use Apple Pay as they still need to carry their wallet with them! Having a TAP Wallet means you can still pay with the same speed and efficiency as Apple Pay. What are your thoughts?