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back to article Apple reportedly inks deal with American Express for its iPhone payments system

Apple has reportedly agreed to work with American Express on its new iPhone 6 payment system - which is now just nine days away from being unveiled by Cupertino. The latest rumour once again springs from the Re/Code blog, which cites those ever reliable (or not so much) sources familiar with the situation. But there will be …

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Yoda sighs deeply

The rumour mill is strong in this one Obi.

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Will be entertaining if it's true and also applies to the UK.

Sooo many places don't take American Express due to their insanely high handling fees.

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Anonymous Coward

this is iPhone don't forget, not exactly the sharpest tools in the toolbox...

Will be interesting to see how the press go bananas over something else Android has done for years.

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"Sooo many places don't take American Express due to their insanely high handling fees."

It's slightly more expensive than MC/Visa, but plenty of places do actually accept it: all the supermarkets, petrol stations, BT, railway stations - generally, it's only small businesses that don't. The higher fees do buy great customer service, a good deal for customers (which is why I use it whenever I can: my card gives up to 1.25% of spending back as a straight account credit; my Amazon MasterCard gives me 1% of spending back as Amazon credit, making it my second choice). They also do more to promote their client businesses: I often get promotional credits for making particular purchases, like one-day offers of £5 on local restaurants, posting Tripadvisor reviews, signing up for services like Spotify... I've never had that with any of my MC/Visa cards.

Most absurdly, in a local Indian buffet (which DOES actually take Amex, and was even featured in Amex's small business promotion last year) the waiter told me "we don't take MasterCard, because that's the same as Amex".

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Anonymous Coward

Amex, the card people love to hate. Hardly anywhere accepts it due to the high fees.

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Stop

I keep getting told no where accepts American Express

In fact I've heard for the last twelve years. Yet somehow I manage to put hundreds if pounds a month through it. I wonder how I'm doing that then?

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Anonymous Coward

I've had an Airline Amex for almost 10 years now.

I use it for all travel, food, fuel and the majority of online shopping.

Good insurance. Good car hire deals.

And enough airmiles to get at least 2 longhaul flight tickets a year

and keep elite status without really travelling all that much.

It's a myth it's not accepted anywhere.

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Official Prediction for the 9th

Based entirely on what has crawled out of my arse after a heavy weekend.

iPhone 6 4.7" screen.

iPhone 6 Air(or Pro, or some shit) 5.5" Screen, dead expensive, 'reduced' availability.

oh, one more thing, we have this fancy watch thing, you can all have a good look at it, but it won't be ready until, just before Christmas.

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FAIL

Payment Processor

So Apple has inked a deal to use American Express to be the payment PROCESSOR. That's the back end bit.

So the point isn't that nobody accepts Amex. It's that nobody (yet) accepts Apple!

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Re: Payment Processor

"So the point isn't that nobody accepts Amex. It's that nobody (yet) accepts Apple!"

Other sources have reported that Apple are also signed up with Visa and Mastercard, so the lack of popularity for Amex is moot. I doubt that the payment processors want to tie themselves to any particular hardware or software, so chances are that there's similar deals in the offing for other phone makers.

The thing working in Apple's favour here is the single port of call (not only the software.hardware tie up, but that Apple can and will tell the MNO's to sling their hook). In the world of Android they've got to deal with a host of hardware makers, the vampire data squid that is Google, and the network operators. And each of them is daft enough to think they stand a credible chance of coming up with some proprietary NFC solution that will get them a big slice of the payment before they've gone anywhere near the payment processors.

Personally I might use Visa or Mastercard for NFC, but I wouldn't trust Google, hardware makers, and in particular MNOs. In relative terms Apple fall somewhere in the middle of my distrust spectrum (which only runs from "not much" to "not at all, in this universe and all others"), which is a pity given that I wouldn't touch their over-priced and under-specced hardware. And even Visa & MC can sling their NFC hook until they take liability for fraudulent use of NFC credentials.

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Devil

Re: Payment Processor

"...coming up with some proprietary NFC solution..."

- no, actually they all use bog-standard NFC, just like everybody else. Only crApple would be arrogant enough to try and force everybody else into their own little universe.

- Lock-in, Steve Jobs' own peculiar genius.

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Fine time to quote Douglas Adams...

"The particular way in which he was choosing to dice recklessly with death today was by trying to pay for a drinks bill the size of a small defence budget with an American Express Card, which was not acceptable anywhere in the known Universe."

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