Report: CVS and RiteAid Stop Accepting Apple Pay

CVS and RiteAid (along with a host of other major retailers) have recently stopped accepting Apple Pay and other NFC (near-field communications) payment options like Google Wallet and Softcard.

It is not because they are not technologically ill-equipped to handle the payment option, but it is because they are teaming up with other retailers such as WalMart and K-Mart to develop their own mobile payment system called CurrentC.

What Is The Difference Between CurrentC and Apple Pay?

The big difference between CurrentC and ApplePay is how the credit card companies are implemented.  When using Apple Pay and other NFC payment solutions, the credit card companies are in the middle of the transaction.  However with CurrentC, the credit card companies are left out of the equation and the do not recieve any of the credit card fees associated with the transactions.  CurrentC, however, is not scheduled to be released until sometime in 2015 which leaves all consumers wishing to pay with NFC enabled devices no option but to use another alternative payment method.

In the mean time, the retailers may face pressure if the consumers who wish to use Apple Pay to check-out can’t.  Last Friday (October 24th) RiteAid turned off NFC payments with no warning.

Apple Pay and other NFC Payment options may be safer than using a credit card

  • Apple Pay lets you store and use your credit cards just by using your phone – available on iPhone 6
  • NFC (Near-Field Communication) is basically an antenna inside your phone that uses short encrypted radio waves
  • Much safer than credit cards
  • Your phone gives up a one-time use code when you use it
  • Payment data can only be used once – so if a system gets hacked, the codes are useless.
  • If you lose your phone, you can wipe all the credit cards off it remotely

Are Customers Worse-Off with fewer Payment Options?

MasterCard is arguing back that customers should be allowed to pay the way they want and not be limited at major retailers.  However, this to me seems just like a big company not wanting to lose business.  Not all business accept credit cards – there are many in my small town that still only accept cash or check.  I don’t think it matters what payment methods retailers want to accept.  If someone wants to use NFC only, they will need to shop at a store that accepts that payment method.

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