Apple Pay has only existed for about the last six months, launching back in October 2014. But in that time, Apple (News - Alert) Pay has come a very long way, being seen in thousands of new locations and being put to use by thousands of different users. A new survey from Baird Equity Research showed some of the numbers going into the Apple Pay juggernaut, and why this mobile payment system is shaking up so much of the landscape.
Right now, Apple Pay can only be found on two devices: the iPhone (News - Alert) 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus, with some plans to proceed to the Apple Watch later on. But despite the slim availability of the platform, it's gone on to account for six percent of all in-store mobile transactions by itself. PayPal (News - Alert) reportedly leads the way, and Google Wallet accounted for 11 percent of in-store mobile. But not only is Apple Pay making significant gains in the field, it's also benefiting from clear plans to use the system more often in the future, as represented by 40 percent of iPhone 6 users indicating this to be the case.
The other side of the coin is that retailers are bringing in Apple Pay in huge numbers. While there is a large chunk of business devoted to keeping Apple Pay out in the form of the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX), there's also a substantial portion of business that's welcoming Apple Pay with open arms. Several major retailers already support Apple Pay, and there are likely to be more such retailers in the future, eager to improve relations with mobile customers.
With a steadily-growing user base as well—young customers aged 18-24 are most likely to turn to an in-store mobile payment system—it's clear that Apple Pay has plenty of room for growth here as more Apple devices and more businesses get into Apple Pay. While the loss of the MCX is a blow to Apple Pay's maximum growth—the MCX and its CurrentC program accounts for more than 110,000 locations nationwide, according to reports from the MCX—this may well not be the case for long. If there's one thing the MCX must know, it's that the word of its customer base is the most vital part of its operation. If MCX businesses running CurrentC start losing too much ground to Apple Pay businesses or too many customers request Apple Pay, CurrentC will likely find itself sidelined or outright removed. The MCX is a powerful bloc not to be taken lightly, but customer desires will generally win out.
Still, one thing is clear: these are the early days of Apple Pay, and the platform is likely to expand thanks to its huge user base and name recognition factors. With so many places to use the service on hand, it's already got a lot going for it, and it's only likely to get better in the future. Whether this is enough for it to take dominance or even compete in a market full of mobile payment alternatives remains to be seen, but if Apple Pay falters, it won't be for lack of effort.
Edited by Dominick Sorrentino
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