Will Apple’s New iPhone Help Pave the Way for Mobile Wallets?

Apple plans to turn its new iPhone into a mobile wallet via partnerships with various banks, payment networks and retailers. The company has agreements with Visa, MasterCard and American Express, according to a person familiar with the plans. The new iPhone, expected to debut at Apple’s September 9 press event, will reportedly make mobile payments easier with a new NFC chip and the company’s Touch ID fingerprint reader. A mobile wallet could help keep consumers within the Apple ecosystem.

Apple_iPhone_5sBloomberg reports: “While companies such as Google Inc. have invested in creating ways for phones to make payments in a physical store, U.S. retailers have been slow to adopt the technology, thus limiting the use by shoppers, according to Ben Bajarin, an analyst for Creative Strategies LLC in San Jose, California. That could change with Apple entering the market because iPhones have the largest market share in the U.S., he said.”

“Love it or hate, Apple drives a lot of standards in the industry,” Bajarin said. “They are the mover in these markets. When they do something, the industry seems to follow.”

In addition to keeping users within the Apple ecosystem and extending its brand loyalty, the push for a mobile wallet could also help Apple generate more revenue from its 800 million global iTunes accounts.

“If Apple’s mobile wallet takes off, it could open up new possibilities as a marketing platform by generating advertising revenue from consumer brands wanting to reach shoppers while in a store,” explains Bloomberg. Crone Consulting “estimates that a frequently used mobile wallet application could generate about $300 a year per user from advertising.”

Related Story:
Why Apple’s Mobile-Payments System Might Actually Work, Quartz, 9/1/14