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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Apple Introduces a New Way to Pay

Apple Pay has launched in the United States. ATVN's Isaac Moody reports.

Apple Pay is now ready for download in the United States. If you own an iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPad Air 2, iPad Mini 3, or an Apple Watch, you can pay for anything with the touch of a finger. 

Available with the iOS 8.1 update, Apple Pay uses fingerprint identification to allow for touch-and-go payments when making purchases from partnering businesses and restaurants.

This enables those who use participating banks to make cardless transactions at 220,000 stores worldwide. Partners include everyone from McDonald’s to Whole Foods—and the list is only growing. Users can also apply the new feature to certain applications on their Apple devices, such as Uber and Groupon. 

Apple highlights the simplicity and security of its new contactless payment technology. Apple Pay users can store their debit and credit cards in the Passbook application. With payment, card numbers are never stored in Apple servers, and card numbers are not transmitted to merchants.

This makes for a more secure method of paying—you’re not even required to tell the merchant your name. Your fingerprint is enough.

“It sounds like it’s a great way to minimize what you would have in your wallet,” said Trina Gregory, Senior Lecturer for the Information Technology Program at the Viterbi School of Engineering. “Nowadays, everyone is just carrying their phones and, sometimes, they’re carrying their drivers’ licenses…. Being able to pay by phone is great.”

In 2011, Google implemented a similar idea with its “Google Wallet”, which is also available for use on the iPhone.

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