The Impact of Apple Pay is Greater Than We Could Have Imagined

When a revolutionary new service arrives, especially from Apple, the long term consequences are seldom appreciated at first. The tendency is to compare it to the known competition rather than explore the synergistic effects. Even now, those effects are kicking in, very early in the life of Apple Pay.


Apple Pay is now having an impact at every level of the finance industry. Customers appreciate the security and convenience. Apple sees Apple Pay as a boost for iPhone 6/6 Plus sales. CEOs and CIOs are noticing how quickly customers are embracing Apple Pay, and they're pondering the impact on their future business. Banks see it as eventually saving them money both in replacement credit cards and fraudulent transactions. See, for example, "Why Banks Love Apple Pay."

Last week, the Whole Foods CIO reported that Apple Pay may have accounted for as much as one percent of all transactions in the first 17 days after Apple Pay launched. "Apple's Wallet Killer Is Already Making An Impact At Whole Foods."

Another factor that was brought home to me this week was Ken Segall's observation this week.

The bottom line is that people can tell whether a company is acting in the customers’ interest or its own self-interest. Which isn’t good news for CurrentC.

When you think about it, social media plays a very significant role in helping people size up the motivations and business angle that companies bring to a new service. For example, CurrentC may have already developed such a bad reputation that it could be doomed even before launch. There's something to be said for Apple's hard work in silence, getting a new service right and keeping the crucial details a secret until launch.

And we have yet to see the icing on the cake. When the Apple Watch ships, it will support NFC payments just as the iPhone 6 family does now. Waving your hand (well, kinda) to pay, as Will Smith/Del Spooner did in the movie I, Robot (2004) will be so cool, every other smartwatch company will have to scramble just to keep up.

Image Credit: 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Next: the tech news debris for the week of November 10: Jonathan Ive, death spirals, and cool hardware.


Page 2 - The Tech News Debris for the Week of November 10


Jonathan Ive. Image credit: Apple

This week, Apple's Jonathan Ive spoke at London's Design Museum and had some blunt things to say about companies that steal Apple's designs. He said:

"If you expect me to buy something where all I can sense is carelessness, actually I think that is personally offensive," he continued. "It's offensive culturally, because it shows a disregard for our fellow human.

The sad thing is that so much of what we're surrounded by in the physical world that is a product of manufacture, so much of it testifies to carelessness. The one good thing about that is if you do care it is really conspicuous."

Perhaps that disregard for the customer ends up torpedoing the copycat company in ways that aren't immediately obvious. Kate MacKenzie at Mac360 elaborates on this in "The Death Spiral: It’s What Happens To Those Who Steal From Apple."

Let's have some fun with hardware. First, here's the Macworld UK review of the iPad mini 3. "New iPad mini 3 review: £80 for the Touch ID is too much & it's no match for the iPad Air 2." The review is generally favorable, but there are a few quibbles.

Ryan Smith carries on a fabulous tradition at AnandTech by covering Apple's new A8X processor in handsome detail. "Apple A8X's GPU - GXA6850, Even Better Than I Thought."

I am beginning to sense that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is having a real impact at Microsoft. While he may not be in a position yet to fix the "Surface" problem, he's doing some subtle things right. By Surface problem, I mean this. If you're going to pit your tablet against a MacBook Air, shouldn't it look a whole lot cooler? All this ad does is emphasize how bad the Surface looks compared to an MBA. That's a problem.

On the other hand, it appears that Microsoft has no problem bringing Cortana (Siri counterpart) over to other operating systems. "Microsoft's Siri Rival Might Not Be Exclusive To Windows Phones Much Longer." The thinking here is that if Microsoft's stuff is so good, it should stand on its own merits on any OS, not simply be a way to force us to use Windows. Evidently, that's working better than the reverse, iTunes on Windows, such as it is. This is a great signal from Microsoft.

Along those lines, Chris Breen at Macworld gives us a sneak peek at a part of Microsoft Office 2015 for the Mac with the Outlook 2015 component. The bottom line?

"Outlook 2015 is not a release packed with new features. It’s already a very capable email client. Rather, it’s an update that hopefully makes it faster and more reliable as well as brings it into line with other Microsoft efforts including Outlook for Windows and Office 365. If you’re an Office 365 subscriber it’s worth your while to give it a try.

Until now, we haven't had a clear picture of the relative sales of the iPhone 6 versus the iPhone 6 Plus. But now there is some initial data. "iPhone 6 outselling iPhone 6 Plus by 3-to-1 margin in US - report." This is as I thought it would be. The monster iPhone 6 Plus is cool, but it's probably too large for the majority of users. Still, accounting for a quarter of all new iPhone sales is outstanding.

Finally, if you're curious about the latest version of Android 5.0, called "Lollipop," ars technica has published an in-depth review of this formidable competitor to iOS. "Android 5.0 Lollipop, thoroughly reviewed."

Know thy enemy.


Particle Debris is a generally a mix of John Martellaro's observations and opinions about a standout event or article of the week (preamble on page one) followed by a discussion of articles that didn't make the TMO headlines, the technical news debris. The column is published most every Friday except for holidays.