As Apple Pay continues to roll out around the world, a fuller picture is starting to emerge of what Apple has in mind with these efforts.
The mobile payment platform is expected to go live in Japan on October 25th. Its launch in the country will be a little more involved than it has been elsewhere, with the platform being integrated into the JR East transit company’s widely used Suica payment card, as well as the iD payment service offered by major domestic telecom Docomo. As AppleInsider notes, both JR East and Docomo have scheduled major maintenance downtimes for their systems on October 25th, suggesting they’ll be going live with Apple Pay support.
The service is also expected to launch soon in Germany, thanks to a seeming mistake on the Apple Pay website, which posted a map showing Germany included in the global availability of the service. Some German blogs took note of it, and soon after the map was altered to remove the indicated German support, but many have taken it as a clear sign that a German launch is imminent.
Meanwhile, in an interview with the Nikkei Asian Review, Apple CEO Tim Cook suggested that his company views Apple Pay as more than an alternative payment service in itself. As 9to5Mac reports, Cook told the publication, “We would like to be a catalyst for taking cash out of the system. We don’t think the consumer particularly likes cash.” The company has been cagey about the business performance of its mPayment service, but given that it’s clearly intent on rolling it out across the world, and Cook’s recent comments, it seems the pursuit is part of a larger effort that Apple wants to be in the middle of, possibly even if it’s not very profitable at the moment.