Apple Pay a Hot Topic at CARTES (Nov. 4, 2014)
Apple Pay’s rollout was a top theme for payments executives speaking today during the kickoff conference session of CARTES in Paris. “Apple Pay’s launch is good news for the [global] mobile payments ecosystem,” François-Xavier Godron, NFC program director specializing in mobile payments for telco giant Orange France, told attendees during a keynote address. Godron believes Apple’s commitment to NFC handsets is well-timed, as many countries around the world begin to see results from years of building the infrastructure to support NFC at the POS. About 30 percent of all retail POS terminals in France accept NFC transactions and half of all mobile handsets Orange sells are NFC-enabled, Godron said.
The positive buzz surrounding Apple Pay undoubtedly will help drive more NFC development and innovation from other payments industry players, predicted Oyvind Rastad, chairman of consulting and research firm Eurosmart, which foresees a global surge in manufacturing of contactless cards and NFC-enabled handsets in 2015. “We believe Apple Pay will help boost overall global NFC services by proving [mobile payments] can combine security and a very good user experience,” he added.
Other payments industry players already are feeling competitive pressure from Apple Pay, Andy Copeman, a U.K.-based analyst with Aite Group, tells Paybefore. “Consumers seem to immediately understand the appeal of Apple Pay and how to use it, versus other approaches that required several steps to initiate a payment or relied on QR codes,” he says. “Now a lot of companies are scrambling, rethinking their mobile services, because Apple Pay has set a new standard for simplicity and ease of use that consumers have responded to.”
Apple CEO Tim Cook said last week that more than 1 million credit cards were registered in Apple Pay within 72 hours of its launch.
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