Shortly after Apple Pay launched in October 2014, some retailers began blocking Apple's mobile payment service and others. That included CVS, who today is launching their own mobile payment service to compete with Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay.
CVS Pay is a new mobile payment service for CVS Pharmacy stores. Built into the CVS Pharmacy app, CVS Pay works by letting a customer add their debit or credit cards to the app and then showing the app’s barcode to a cashier at checkout. The cashier scans the barcode, and after ringing up the items, the customer selects the payment method that they’d like to use in the app. The service also works in the drive-thru using a pickup number.
CVS Pay also integrates prescription pickup and CVS’s ExtraCare loyalty program into your barcode scan.
CVS says that its mobile payment service is now live in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. A nationwide rollout is slated for later in 2016. CVS Pay works on Android and iOS and supports MasterCard, Visa, Discover, and American Express as well as debit, Health Savings Account, and Flexible Spending Account cards.
Apple, Google, and Samsung already have established mobile payment solutions, but the mobile payments game is still young, and CVS wants to see if it can gain traction with its own service rather than relying on services from other companies. We’ll have to wait and see if the strategy works out for them, but if you’re in one of the markets where CVS Pay is now live, you can go give it a try for yourself right now.