Today’s Blog@BOQ is from Andrew Murrell, BOQ’s General Manager Direct & Digital Channels, including Internet & Mobile Banking, ATMs, Corporate Website, Social Media and the Customer Contact Centre.
While much of the hype over the Apple iPhone 6 launch was focused on one game developer’s wardrobe, the disruption caused by ‘Scarf Guy‘ should pale in comparison to the commotion we’ll see when Apple Pay hits Australian shores.
Along with Apple’s latest smartphone, the company has revealed a new functionality which promises to ‘revolutionise’ the mobile payment industry.
Apple Pay, which will be built into the new iPhone 6, iPhone 6 plus and Apple Watch, is set to mitigate the need for cumbersome wallets. Instead, your phone or watch can be used much in the same way as your credit cards.
But how exactly does Apple Pay work? And is it safe for the Australian market?
How does Apple Pay work?
Similar to Visa’s PayWave and Mastercard’s PayPass, the Apple Pay utilises contactless technology to enable consumers to make purchases with one simple touch.
Essentially, you only need to add your credit or debit card details to the Apple Pay app. The technology required to interact with the contactless terminals is already included within the iPhone 6 or Apple Watch. All you need to do is hold your device near a payment terminal and wait for the subtle vibration and beep to tell you the payment has gone through.
Is it safe?
Many people have wondered about the safety of contactless payments. While convenient, the ability to make purchases without a PIN or signature can make it easier for opportunistic thieves to use your card.
However, Apple Pay has measures in place to mitigate this risk. The biggest difference is the Touch ID – designed specifically to improve the safety of contactless payments. Apple Pay requires you to hold your finger on the ID pad on your iPhone 6, using your fingerprint to unlock the application.
Thanks to this simple security measure, your average thief will be unable to use the Apple Pay app.
In fact, Apple has even highlighted some reasons why your iPhone could actually be a more secure payment option than your debit or credit card.
For instance, every time you take your card out of your wallet your card number and name is visible. With Apple Pay, these important details are not stored or displayed on your phone.
Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and securely stored on a dedicated chip in the iPhone and Apple Watch. This means that your actual account and card numbers are never shared with merchants or terminals.
Another important feature is the Find My iPhone application. If you ever lose your device, you can protect your accounts online by switching your iPhone into Lost Mode. This means that nothing on the phone is accessible. Alternatively you can even wipe your iPhone completely clean for added security.
Is Australia ready for Apple Pay?
So far, Apple has not announced plans to release Apple Pay in Australia. However, with such a strong uptake of contactless payments Down Under, it seems likely that Apple will introduce the technology once there are enough iPhone 6 users to make the move viable.
Would you use Apple Pay in stores?