Apple Pay Overtakes Starbucks as Most Popular Mobile Payment Platform in the US

Apple Pay has overtaken the Starbucks mobile app to become the most popular mobile payment system in the United States, claims a new report out today.

According to eMarketer, ‌Apple Pay‌ became the market leader last year, when 27.7 million Americans used the app to make a purchase. Since then, however, ‌Apple Pay‌ has grown even faster than expected.

In 2019, ‌Apple Pay‌ will have 30.3 million users, or 47.3 percent of mobile payment users. That compares with Starbucks' 25.2 million customers via its mobile app in the same year, representing 39.4 percent of mobile payment users.
"‌Apple Pay‌ has benefited from the spread of new point-of-sale (POS) systems that work with the NFC signals ‌Apple Pay‌ runs on," said eMarketer principal analyst Yory Wurmser. "The same trend should also help Google Pay and Samsung Pay, but they will continue to split the Android market."
Citing data from Digital Trends, the analysis predicts ‌Apple Pay‌ will be available in 70 percent of U.S. retailers by the end of 2019. In contrast, the Starbucks app has commanded a 40 percent market share of mobile payments for the last few years, but growth potential is limited because it can only be used in Starbucks stores.

Total spending via contactless mobile payments will approach $100 billion this year in the U.S., according to eMarketer. On average, that is equivalent to a user spending $1,545 per year, up more than 24 percent over last year.

Nearly 64 million people (30 percent of all U.S. smartphone users) are expected to make use of mobile payments this year, a 9.1 percent increase over 2018. In terms of demographics, nearly 50 percent of all smartphone users are adults aged 25 to 34, so the growth of mobile payments is expected to be strongest in this age group, although digital wallet use is said to be growing across the board.

"Although a growing number of millennials feel secure using payment apps, virtually all still find credit and debit cards equally convenient," said eMarketer forecasting analyst Vincent Yip. That bodes well for Apple Card, which launched earlier this year. ‌Apple Pay‌ is now in 47 markets and in the June quarter, started adding more new users than PayPal, with monthly transaction volume growing four times as fast.

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Apple CEO Tim Cook Says Financing iPhone X Can Work Out to Cost of Just a Few Nice Coffees Per Week

While the iPhone X starts at $999 in the United States, with an even more expensive 256GB model available for $1,149, Apple CEO Tim Cook believes the price can ultimately work out to less than one cup of coffee per day.

On a conference call after Apple reported its fourth quarter earnings results on Thursday, Cook started by saying the iPhone X can be financed for as little as $33 per month at select carriers in the United States.

AT&T, for example, offers the base model iPhone X for 30 monthly payments of $33.34, which works out to exactly $1,000 over that period.

"I think it's important to remember that a large number of people pay for the phone by month," said Cook. "I think you would find you could buy an iPhone X for $33/month. So, if you think about that, that's a few coffees a week -- it's less than a coffee a day at one of these nice coffee places."

Cook added that many customers are now trading in their current iPhone towards their next iPhone, reducing their total amount owing by $300 to $350 in the process. He said the iPhone tends to have the highest resale value in the industry.

"In terms of the way we price, we price to the value that we're providing," said Cook. "We're not trying to charge the highest price we could get or anything like that. We're just trying to price it for what we're delivering. iPhone X has a lot of great new technologies in there that are leading the industry."

"It is a fabulous product," he added, still referring to the iPhone X. "We can't wait for people to start getting it in their hands."

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