Report: MCX Merchants Snub Apple Pay
Sept. 18, 2014
Walmart and Best Buy, two of the most popular retailers in the U.S. and founding members of the mobile-payments initiative MCX, have taken an early stand against Apple and its competing platform, Apple Pay. Walmart confirmed in published reports that it will not support Apple Pay in its stores and Best Buy, which removed NFC capability from POS terminals at its stores in 2011 citing the high expense, said it has no plans to turn that functionality back on. In this battle between competing technologies, can either brand win while shutting the other out or will they, along with Google Wallet and other mobile payment platforms, find there is room for everyone?
Some experts have said Apple Pay will take over payments like the iPod took over music. But, while Apple has aligned with most of the legacy payments players and some large merchants, the largest is standing in its way. Walmart, and other MCX merchants that may not accept Apple Pay, are driven by considerations Apple has no say over, according to George Peabody, a partner with the consultancy Glenbrook Payments.
“Apple can’t steamroll merchants who are worried about cost and branding,” Peabody told CardNotPresent.com. “MCX is about a new funding model that changes the economics in their favor.”
Asked if Apple might consider retaliating by keeping MCX’s CurrentC app out of its App Store, Peabody didn’t think it likely.
“I don’t see Apple as being in the payments business with Apple Pay so I don’t see any incentive for them to keep the CurrentC app out of their store,” he continued. “And, there’s nothing that says down the line the MCX merchants couldn’t use NFC or even BLE to kick off a CurrentC payment from within Passbook. Apple Pay might just be used to provide stronger authentication – which is a real advantage of it.”