Apple is secretly working on an update that will make iPhones usable as payment terminals. Bloomberg reported the news based on anonymous sources familiar with the matter.
Although iPhones can already be used to accept credit and debit card payments, a Bluetooth connection with a wireless payment terminal is required. According to Bloomberg’s sources, Apple has been working on a feature to make iPhones self-sufficient since 2020.
In the same year, Mobeewave was acquired by Apple. Mobeewave developed a technology to process credit card payments through smartphones. The sources claim that Apple is tinkering with the technology to accept debit and credit cards through iPhones. This would make a range of payment terminals obsolete.
Impact on the market
Apple will likely use existing NFC (near field communications) chips. NFC chips are currently integrated into iPhones to support Apple Pay payments. Expanding the feature to debit and credit cards is possible — but risky. The revenues of several payment providers depend on Apple.
Organizations like Square produce payment terminals with built-in iPhone support. From the moment iPhones support debit and credit cards, their product becomes obsolete. That moment seems dangerously close. The sources expect Apple to introduce the feature sometime in the next few months. Bloomberg asked Apple to comment. The organization declined.