A few days ago I was standing in line at a store, a store that just so happens to support Apple Pay, and I watched someone pull out their iPhone 6, go through the process, and watching the task ultimately fail. Now, I was a few spaces behind so I have no idea what made it fail, but after a few tries, they had to put their phone back into their pocket, pull out their wallet and go through the whole tedious task of paying with an actual card.
As I stood there, watching, I noticed that I was the only one paying any attention to the ordeal at hand. The details of it, anyway. A person behind me was upset that it was taking a long time to check out, but they weren’t paying any attention to why it was taking that long. And, when it was all over, and the line moved forward and the person who tried to use Apple Pay left, I couldn’t help but wonder if they were ever going to use it again.
Or did they go home and remove their card from the phone out of spite?
The mobile industry is one that hangs onto trends with a death grip, and sometimes we get stuff thrown onto us just because. I kind of still feel like big screens are the result of that mob mentality, but it is what it is. Most recently, though, smartwatches have become all the rage for companies, despite the fact that the general consensus from the populace seems to be that we’re all still waiting for wearables to become truly worthwhile. In the meantime, though, companies are more than happy to throw at us what we think we want, despite the fact most of them keep missing the point.
And then there’s mobile payments. Now, broadly, I don’t think this suffers from the same negative points as smartwatches, simply because, fundamentally, it isn’t necessarily lacking anything. It does only one thing, offer the ability to pay for things with your phone rather than a physical card, and that’s it. But, I still think it’s a trend that, up until recently, was resting quietly in the shadows, just biding its time.
And then Apple decided to launch Pay, and here we are with rumors that Google is revamping Wallet in a big (and probably unnecessary) way, with other companies and avenues emerging as well. These companies want Apple Pay, or Wallet, or Softcard or whatever else to be the way we pay for food in a drive-thru, instead of handing over our card.
I just don’t think I’m ever going to do that.
In all honesty, that person in that specific line is the first time that I’ve ever seen anyone try to use mobile payments, and I think it’s frustrating that the first time I ever got to watch it happen in real time, it didn’t work. And while I could use Apple Pay if I wanted, I just haven’t tried it, and I certainly wasn’t going to try it after I watched that person fail at it.
I’ve had Apple Pay set up ever since I could, and I haven’t tried it once. I just haven’t jumped on that bandwagon yet, and I’m not exactly sure why not, either. I think i’s a cool idea, and I think it’s only a matter of time before our smartphones are really, truly the only thing we need to carry around, but I’m just not there yet.
So I’m curious to find out how many of you have jumped on the mobile payments bandwagon. Have you tried it yet? Is it the only way you pay for anything these days? Or are you waiting? Let me know!