Apple recently revealed that it is paying close attention to the growing cryptocurrency trend, though it’s not yet clear what role the company would like to play in the evolving market.
“We’re watching cryptocurrency,” Apple Pay VP Jennifer Bailey told CNN during a private event. “We think it has interesting long-term potential.”
“This would be a major shot in the arm for crypto if Apple headed down this path,” commented Wedbush Securities analyst Dan Ives.
The news comes only a few weeks after the launch of the Apple Card, and indicates that Apple is still searching for new ways to innovate in the payments space. It’s also worth noting that Apple is not the only major tech company displaying an interest in cryptocurrency. Facebook is still moving forward with plans to launch its own Libra currency, while Square has been working to support cryptocurrency trading on its iOS app.
In the meantime, Apple is working to increase the utility of Apple Pay. Bailey said that she would like to improve the app’s support for tipping, and find away to eliminate the misperception that paying with a physical credit card is safer than paying with a mobile phone, which is particularly strong in the US. She noted that while the US still lags behind Europe, contactless payments have steadily become more popular in the country in the past few years.