Frager Factor

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Apple Poised to "SuperCharge" Mobile Payments (Name Hint)

With biometric and NFC technologies—not to mention the big three credit card companies—on board, Apple may give a big boost to mobile payments, enabling consumers to pay in stores with their iPhones. And merchants may not need new POS terminals.. Apple will unveil its plans Tuesday, but experts have some ideas on what's coming. Full Story

Patent filing most revealing.

Via BusinessInsider
A newly published patent application from Apple appears to offer a glimpse at the company's plans for a future mobile wallet, and it looks a lot like a souped-up version of Passbook, the company's current app for digital coupons, gift cards, and loyalty programs.
Apple could launch a mobile wallet as soon as next month, when the company will reportedly announce the iPhone 6. Experts have speculated that an Apple mobile wallet, which would allow iPhone users to pay in stores with their phone, will likely build on Passbook and use the iPhone's Touch ID fingerprint scanner to authorize transactions.

The new patent filing suggests that those theories are on target. An accompanying picture (see above) shows a mobile wallet that revolves around "digital cards" for different retailers, just as Passbook does, and seems to include QR codes to power payments at a hypothetical merchant.

The patent application, published on July 31, describes a parental control system that would allow users to control payment authorization on their children's devices — a topic of particular concern for Apple after an FTC lawsuit over unauthorized in-app purchases by children, which the company settled for $32.5 million in January.

The disclosure follows rumors of an Apple partnership with Visa on a mobile payments solution. Last week, on a conference call with investors, Visa CEO Charlie Scharf declined to comment specifically on the reported Apple partnership, except to say that the company was "very excited about some of the things that we're talking to potential partners about."

The recent release of iTunes Pass, which allows users to load cash onto an iTunes account at an Apple Store, could also fit into a Passbook-based mobile payments plan. The feature lives as a digital card in Passbook, and displays a QR barcode that, when scanned by an Apple Store clerk, brings up the account's linked credit card information on the clerk's mobile terminal.

Of course Apple was the first retailer to have cash register and cashless transactions  so one would thin k they have a real leg up.

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