Apple’s latest acquisition foreshadows a new payment innovation coming to iPhones.
Apple Inc. acquired Mobeewave Inc. for $100 million on August 3, 2020.
This news is quite crucial to foresee the roadmap for Apple’s Payment services. After introducing Apple Pay in October 2014, the tech giant has accelerated its fintech investments and innovations significantly.
After adding cards to Apple Wallet to use for payments, Apple has introduced some additional services like their exclusive Titanium Card and one-click online payment option as part of their payment services.
No one thought that they would stop there anyway, but looking at Apple’s latest acquisition, something big is coming.
About Mobeewave Inc.
Founded in 2011 in Montreal, QC, Canada, the payment company has been working on contactless payment acceptance solutions.
Currently, their main product is a technology to make accepting card payments with a tap on your phone and no additional POS terminal or plugin card reader.
The intriguing part of the story is that on October 15, 2019, Samsung Electronics announced that the company deployed NFC-enabled (Near-field communication) contactless payment acceptance on mobile devices worldwide through a partnership with Mobeewave.
First, a pilot together then through an official roll-out in some countries, Samsung was empowering its Samsung POSapp with Mobeewave’s technology. It’s not known yet whether Apple’s acquisition will change the company’s partnership with Samsung or not.
What is Apple’s Current POS solutions?
Before this acquisition, it was already possible to accept payments through iPhones. However, it always required either a separate payment terminal or a plugin card reader to complete the transaction.
As listed in Apple’s official store, Apple’s current partners in POS solutions are Clover and Square. These two U.S. based payment facilitators have been providing the necessary equipment to enable accepting card payments.
However, if Mobeewave’s solution expands to all iPhones, not only the future of this partnership but also the future of these payment companies may be jeopardized. Who needs a POS terminal, if your iPhone already acts like one.
NFC vs. QR Code Payments
Looking at the macro trends, the $100 Million investment on an NFC technology is also a positive score on NFC’s side against QR (Quick Response) code payment technology.
Currently, the card issuers like Visa and Master Card are in favor of NFC tech as it still maintains the need for their cards to be issued to remain as the facilitator of payments.
On the other hand, the quickly growing cryptocurrency industry facilitates most of the payments on their blockchain through QR codes, as wallet addresses are long and hard to memorize.
Since both technologies are full of promises for the future of the payment industry, it’s hard to foresee if one will dominate the other in the long-term. Especially since they’re optimized for different use-cases, and one is not significantly superior to the other, looking at their pros and cons.
From Apple’s perspective, the QR code technology is not overlooked either, considering they have integrated a QR code reader to their native camera app. However, there is no known plan to integrate it as an exclusive payment tool yet.
Different Takeaways for Different Roles
If you are a business owner, it seems like in the future, collecting payments will be a lot easier than today either through NFC or QR code.
Getting paid just through your iPhone may ease your work significantly if Apple integrates Mobeewave’s technology natively to its devices.
From the consumer point of view, this acquisition may not mean much as Apple already allows card payments from iPhones through its Apple Pay service. However, no need to be sad about it, as the future of payment services holds excellent potential for other innovations.
This article is originally published on Medium!
If you’re interested in fintech innovations, I would recommend you to check my other piece about the future of banking services as well.
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