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You may have heard about Apple Pay, and you might have even seen it in action. But if you still don’t know how it works, here’s a rundown of the basics.
Apple Pay is a mobile wallet, giving customers the power to pay for goods or services using credit or debit card information stored on their smartphone. In the case of Apple Pay, this means iPhones issued from iPhone 6 onwards (including Plus versions), as well as the Apple Watch. You can also use a selection of newer iPads too, but we’ll cover that later.
How does Apple Pay work?
Apple Pay utilises technology called near field communication (NFC), which enables two devices — such as your smartphone and a Square contactless and chip reader — to communicate with each other when they’re held close together.
Why should I use Apple Pay?
There are three key reasons why people use Apple Pay: security, speed and convenience.
While carrying around your credit or debit card details on your smartphone may sound scary, rest assured: thieves and fraudsters can’t make payments with the information saved on your device. Apple Pay requires Touch ID, or fingerprint verification, in order to complete a purchase. And beyond fingerprints, the data associated with your card information is securely encrypted and constantly changing (through a process called tokenisation), so if thieves stole your phone, there’s nothing they can do with the information. This makes Apple Pay one of the most secure ways to pay.
Apple Pay is also super fast. Transactions are completed almost instantly, so customers are serviced quickly, making for a better experience. Businesses that accept Apple Pay can rapidly reduce wait times and queues.
Finally, what’s more convenient than paying with a device that’s already in your hand? Rather than carrying around a wallet, handbag or credit card — everything you need to go shopping is now on your iPhone or Apple Watch.
How do I start using Apple Pay?
It’s easy to set up Apple Pay on your device. Here’s how:
- Open Wallet on your iPhone. On your iPad, go to settings and choose Wallet & Apple Pay.
- Tap the plus sign in the upper-right corner to add a credit or debit card.
- Tap Next.
- Position your card in the frame to capture an image of it with your device’s camera, or enter your card details manually.
- Tap Next. Your bank will verify your information and determine whether you can add your card to Apple Pay. It might ask you to provide additional verification.
- Once your card is verified, tap Next. Now you can start using Apple Pay.
Where can I use Apple Pay?
Lots of big retailers already accept Apple Pay, and the list is growing daily. But Apple Pay isn’t just for large businesses. Small businesses can use Square’s new contactless and chip reader to accept Apple Pay from their customers. Our new reader enables customers to pay with mobile wallets like Apple Pay and contactless-enabled debit and credit cards.
Apple Pay is also accepted within some apps, like those from Uber, Etsy and Starbucks. When you pay within an app, just complete the purchase using Touch ID. What could be simpler than that?