Home iOS Mobile convergence accelerates as ‘Tap to Pay’ dings US retail

Mobile convergence accelerates as ‘Tap to Pay’ dings US retail


It’s been 15 years since the iPhone gave rise to the modern smartphone, and mobile now sits at the center of almost every thing we do. So it matters that US shoppers will soon find retailers prepared to take contactless payments using iPhone’s new Tap to Pay feature.

The retail experience is a mobile experience

One of the biggest US payment services providers, Adyen, has officially commenced support for Tap to Pay in its merchant networks and retailers.

Based (we think) on technology Apple purchased with Mobeewave in 2020, Tap to Pay lets retailers accept payments using an iPhone XS or newer from iPhones, contactless cards, and digital wallets from any provider choosing to support the system. Realistically, this represents the latest evolution in the mobile transformation of the retail customer journey we’ve been experiencing since Apple’s Steve Jobs climbed the stage in 2007 to show us a mobile phone that could also play music and had a real web browser.

Apple’s moves into retail have never been particularly disguised. The company runs its own global network of highly profitable retail stores and has used them to try out its ideas.

Mobile transformation of everyday life

Even before your iPhone became your wallet, consumers used the devices to check prices while in a shop (“Showrooming”), to source discount codes, and engage with manufacturers. Apple has simply moved with these demands, introducing supporting tools such as Maps, Apple Business Chat, Apple Pay, ARKit, and (in iOS 16) an expansion of tools to create and use indoor maps.

The company may have been mocked when company retail chief Angela Ahrendts introduced a new approach to retail in which stores became “town squares” and Jony Ive designed attractive pots to contain forests of indoor trees in Apple retail stores.

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