Apple is reportedly planning to launch its own mobile payment service, according to a new report from 9to5Mac’s Mark Gurman.
Apple executives are said to be in talks with directors from high-end retail chains about integrating this mobile payment service into their brands.
Gurman didn’t mention any brands specifically, but did point out that they sell luxury and premium goods.
The service would allow iPhone owners to pay for items at these retail chains through their phones. The payment system would be directly linked to the iPhone owner’s iTunes account.
Based on Gurman’s report, Apple appears to be researching the best way to execute such a system. Since every outlet has its own transaction process, it could be difficult to created a single payment platform that would work with multiple stores.
The sources briefed on Apple’s plans told Gurman that an iPhone payment platform probably won’t launch any time soon, and that the company’s discussions with retailers are in a preliminary phase. However, a separate source told Gurman that Apple has already begun working on the project internally. Apple’s chief of its online store Jennifer Bailey is said to be leading the effort.
This is far from being the first time we’ve heard about Apple digging into the mobile payment space. Gurman’s report lines up with news from The Wall Street Journal that broke back in January, which said that Apple was laying the foundation for a mobile payments service.
Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of internet and software services, and CEO Tim Cook had met with industry sources months ago about building a platform for purchasing goods and services through Apple devices, according to the WSJ.
Apple has more than 800 million iTunes accounts with credit cards on file, which would make it relatively easy for Apple’s mobile payment platform to catch on with consumers. On stage at Re/code’s Code Conference this week, Cue noted that this library of credit cards could allow Apple to expand into additional products and services.
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