Apple Finally Launches Apple Pay Cash

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Months after teasing Apple Pay Cash at its World Wide Developer Conference, Apple is ready to release the person-to-person payment option — at least in beta for
Starting with iOS 11.2 Beta, which arrived on Tuesday, iPhone and iMessage users will be able to send and receive cash payments directly from inside the iPhone’s Messages app using iMessage. The full version will arrive when iOS 11.2 and watchOS 4.2 are released for all iPhone and Apple Watch users later this year.
For Apple, Apple Pay Cash is a natural extension of its Apple Pay contact-less payment system.
The service has grown, according to Jennifer Bailey, VP of Apple Pay, from 3% acceptance at retail when Apple Pay launched in 2015 to more than 50% of all retail. Still, the overarching goal for Apple Pay was, she said, “to replace the wallet,” And with billions of person-to-person cash payments happening each month for everything from paying the baby-sitter to splitting the dinner check, Apple knew it couldn’t reach that goal without adding support for these everyday payments.
Like other person-to-person payment systems (Venmo, Zelle), Apple Pay Cash will let you use a credit or debit card to pay someone directly through your smartphone. Unlike, Venmo, there is no special Apple Pay Cash app. Instead, Apple Pay Cash lets you pay and receive funds through the Messages app.
The feature will appear as the Apple Pay logo in the App Drawer, the shallow bar that appears below your iMessage thread and that, for iPhone X owners, is also home to Animojis (soon to be the second best reason to use the App Drawer).
You can tap the icon and send money to your iMessage contact. The money is drawn from a debit or credit card you already have in your Apple Wallet on the iPhone. Debit cards will let you send the funds for free, but credit cards put an industry-standard 3-percent fee on every transactions.
Notification that money is now part of an iMessage thread appears as a special iMessage chat bubble. You have to click “Accept Money” to receive your funds.
If you’re lucky enough to be on the receiving side, the money is automatically deposited in a new Apple PayCash Card, which is created automatically and lives inside your Apple Wallet.
Apple Pay Cash won’t significantly alter the look of iMessages. In fact, the messaging system will watch for discussions about money or splitting payment and add a little indicator near the comment.
Apple Pay Cash will also work with Siri (“Hey Siri, send Lance Ulanoff $100″) and Apple Watch.
Apple Pay Cash may be convenient, but it doesn’t have a clear path to millennial hearts or wallets. PayPal’s Venmo is still the market leader, boasting huge growth, skyrocketing from $2.5 B quarterly transactions in 2015 to over $8 Billion in Q2. In addition, some of the biggest banks in America, including Chase, Wells Fargo, and Citibank, joined forces last summer to launch their own person-to-person payment system, Zelle.
In addition, making using these funds as easy as sending and receiving them should inspire more people to start using this cashless cash payment system.

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