Apple is reportedly working on a new payment feature called ‘Apple Pay Later’ that will let users pay for purchases at a later date.
Apple Pay Later will be available for purchases made at either retail or online stores, Bloomberg reports, citing insiders ‘with knowledge of the matter’.
The feature would let Apple Pay users split their payments into four interest-free installments, or across several months with interest, according to Bloomberg.
There’s no official word from Apple regarding if the product is actually in development on when it would be released.
It sounds similar to Klarna, which was founded in 2005 and encourages users to ‘Shop Like A Queen’ in adverts.
Other ‘buy now, pay later’ (BNPL) providers include Clearpay, Laybuy, Affirm, Afterpay and even e-commerce giant PayPal, which lets users pay in four installments.
According to Reuters, Bloomberg’s report has dragged down shares of other companies in the BNPL sector, including Afterpay and Sezzle.
Apple is reportedly working on Apple Pay Later to help encourage sales. The feature would be available through Apple Pay, it digital wallet through which users can pay with a number of cards
HOW WOULD APPLE PAY LATER WORK?
Apple Pay Later will be an option within the Apple Pay app.
It would be available for purchases online and at physical stores too.
Users could split their payments into four interest-free instalments, or across several months with interest.
Bloomberg said Apple Pay Later is still in development and its features could change or be cancelled.
BNPL helps to increase sales by easing the financial burden of particularly expensive online purchases.
But critics have suggested it just gets users into debt and encourages them to buy products they can’t actually afford.
Such fears fuelled the UK government’s decision, announced in February this year, that the sector will become subject to regulation from the Financial Conduct Authority.
‘Buy now, pay later products are rapidly increasing in popularity, with the volume of transactions tripling in 2020 as the pandemic drove online shopping, and there is now a significant risk that these agreements could cause harm to consumers,’ government said at the time.
Apple appears undeterred and is keen to tap the market, the Bloomberg report suggests, although it’s likely such a feature would launch in the US first before to a wider rollout.
Apple makes money from Apple Pay by taking a tiny fraction of every transaction made using an iPhone, iPad or Apple Watch.
The Cupertino-based tech giant is working with banking giant Goldman Sachs to develop Apple Pay Later, according to Bloomberg. Goldman Sachs will be the lender for the customers’ loans, it claims.
Goldman Sachs has been Apple’s partner for Apple Card – the tech giant’s branded credit card that’s only available in the US – since 2019.
But Apple Pay Later isn’t tied to Apple Card and doesn’t require the use of one, Bloomberg claims, citing information from the insiders ‘who asked not to be named discussing unannounced products’.
Apple declined to offer comment to MailOnline.
Pictured, Apple Card, the firm’s official branded credit card that was launched in 2019. Apple Card is designed primarily to be used with Apple Pay on Apple devices such as an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, or Mac. According to the report, Apple Pay Later doesn’t require the use of Apple Card
Bloomberg also reports that Apple Pay Later is still in development and its features could change or be cancelled.
Anyone interested in Apple Pay Later will need to submit ID and have to be approved via an application submitted through the iPhone’s Wallet app, the report added.
‘Apple will also offer customers the ability to exit payment plans to pay off the remainder of their purchase balance,’ it says.
Apple Pay initially launched in the US in October 2014 before launching in July the following year.
The wallet can be used to make a contactless payment in a shop, on public transport, in an app or through an online store.
HOW DOES APPLE PAY WORK?
Apple Pay is the firm’s mobile payment and virtual wallet service.
It allows customers to make payments using an iPhone, Watch, iPad or Mac.
It works alongside most banks and most major credit and debit cards providers including Visa, MasterCard and American Express.
To use the services, users must link their device, security details and bank card.
To do this, open Wallet, go to settings and find Wallet and Apple Pay in there.
Apple Pay is the Apple’s mobile payment and virtual wallet service. It allows customers to make payments using an iPhone, Watch, iPad or Mac
Here, you can add credit or debit cards.
Before it is activated, the device needs to be authenticated by the bank.
Each bank has different protocols, but their security measures will have to be passed before Apple Pay is fully verified.
After your card is verified, you can tap Next and start using Apple Pay.
Apple Pay requires the Near Field Communication (NFC) antenna and Touch ID or Face ID on iPhone 6 and later to work.
Once set up, you can hold your device near a contactless terminal to authorise a payment.
For most iPhones double pressing the home button will bring up the Apple Pay function, which will use your fingerprint to confirm the transaction.
On the iPhoneX, users must press the sleep/wake button twice to invoke Apple Pay.