When Apple launched Apple Pay in September, the list of retailers who backed it was long, but in the weeks following the launch, some major retailers have blocked it in favour of a competing option set to debut in 2015.
Apple Pay was operational at NFC terminals at Rite Aid and CVS, both non-Apple Pay partners, but was reportedly disabled over the course of the last 48 hours.
A CVS employee said that the company disabled NFC payments over the weekend which would also prevent Google Wallet users from using NFC payments.
A leaked memo, revealed on Friday by Slashgear, suggested that the retailers have decided they want nothing to do with Apple Pay and are working with a group of large retailers to develop a mobile wallet that allows for mobile payments attached to credit cards and bank accounts directly from a smart phone. We expect to have this feature available in the first half of 2015.
The new payment system mentioned in the alleged leaked Rite Aid memo is a solution developed by Merchant Customer Exchange called CurrentC. Other confirmed major retailers included in the system will be CVS, Kmart, Sears, Target, Walmart, Best Buy and 7 Eleven, the cream of the crop of mainstream retailers in the US.
The Tame Apple Press is screaming blue murder at the scheme which is likely to allow merchants to avoid paying credit card processing fees and give them more information about customers. Everyone knows that this sort of data should be in the hands of technology companies rather than retailers.
But what this means is that Apple Pay may have the traction that the Tame Apple Press claimed.