Apple Pay Mobile Payment Service Unveiled: How Does It Work?

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PHOTOGRAPH: Apple | New mobile payment solution called Apple Pay aims to replace your wallet completely

New mobile payment solution called Apple Pay aims to replace your wallet completely


Aside from shiny new devices like the Apple Watch, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus, Apple also unveiled their new mobile payment technology, the Apple Pay, during their launch event on Tuesday.

According to the tech company, Apple Pay aims to revolutionize what they call the “fairly antiquated payments process” we are using today. The new payment method will use a combination of the iPhone?s NFC (near-field communication) antenna, Passbook app, Touch ID, and dedicated chip called Secure Element which stores encrypted information. The method will also sync with a user?s payment information already linked to their iTunes accounts.


How does it work?

In an iPhone, the NFC is located at the top portion. Users will be able to store and view their credit card information within the Passbook app, along with loyalty cards and access to other things like tickets. The iPhone?s iSight camera can be used to snap a photo of a card and store it in the said app. If a new iPhone 6 is used, those card information will then be stored in it?s new Secure Element chip.

While shopping in a store, users can pay for a product or service by holding their iPhone in front of a reader while placing their finger on the device?s Touch ID sensor to confirm the purchase. When buying something within an app, all a user need to do is select Apple Pay as the payment method and authenticate the purchase using Touch ID.


Is it secure?

We only have Apple?s words on this area, for now. The company describes Apple Pay as safe and secure since it creates a one-time payment or transaction number for every purchase, instead of digitally transmitting security codes and credit card numbers.

Eddy Cure, Senior Vice President of Internet Software and Services at Apple, said, “Apple doesn’t know what you bought, where you bought it or how much you paid for it. The transaction is between you, the merchant and your bank. The cashier doesn’t see your name, credit card number or security code.”

In other words, the payment technology makes a device-specific number in order for each payment to have a one-time payment number and a unique & ever-changing security code. The company added that should a user?s device is lost, they can suspend their payment information using the Find My iPhone feature.


Which merchants support or will support Apple Pay?

At launch, Apple Pay will be supported by six U.S. banks and card payment platforms such as Visa, MasterCard, and AmEx. Around 220,000 stores will also be supported including Walgreens, Macy?s, Sephora, Target, The Disney Store, Starbucks, McDonald?s, Panera Bread, Staples, Subway, Duane Reade, Bloomingdales, and of course, the Apple Store. Banks, merchants, and apps supported by this new payment solution is listed in full by Apple in their dedicated page.


Will it work on my legacy iPhone?

Apple Pay is integrated into the Apple Watch, iPhone 6, and iPhone 6 Plus once they are released. Other devices to be supported are the iPhone 5, iPhone 5C, and iPhone 5S. However, for the older devices, Apple Pay won?t be available until a software update is rolled out on October 2014 in the U.S.


Photo Credit: ?Apple.com

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