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Apple Pay vs. CurrentC: The battle for the US mobile wallet

  • July 2015
  • 22 pages
  • MarketLine
Report ID: 3662177

Summary

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Introduction

In September 2014, Apple announced the Apple Pay mobile payment service, which would allow consumers to pay for goods wirelessly in shops using their new iPhones. This represented a further movement of the technology into the mainstream. However, attempts have been made by MCX, a consortium of retailers, to topple Apple in the US mobile payment market with its own alternative, CurrentC.

Features and benefits

* Assesses the strategic and commercial objective of both Apple Pay and CurrentC.
* Identifies the key aspects of Google, Samsung and PayPal's operations in the mobile payment sector.

Highlights

Apple Pay uses NFC technology which, while secure, is not as well entrenched in the US retail sector as it is in other markets, such as the UK. A key aspect of Apple's strategy with its mobile payment service is the fact that it furthers the 'lock-in-effect' that the company's ever-expanding technology and service ecosystem holds over consumers.
CurrentC requires a substantial amount of user information, which can be used by retailers for customer relationship management (CRM) purposes, although, given the fact that CurrentC suffered a data security breach less than two months after its announcement, this will certainly serve to put off potential users.
Internet search giant Google has been active in the mobile payments market for far longer than either Apple or MCX, having launched the somewhat unsuccessful Google Wallet, which uses NFC technology found in Apple Pay, as early as 2011. Google announced Android Pay in May 2015, which it will hope to take off on smartphones running its Android OS.

Your key questions answered

* Why has Apple decided to enter the mobile payments sector with Apple Pay?
* Why has CurrentC made such a storm in the press since its announcement?
* Will Apple Pay or CurrentC be able to kill the other system off in order to become the mobile payment system of choice?
* Do the operations of Google, Samsung and PayPal pose a threat to either Apple Pay or CurrentC?

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