Apple Pay becomes the most popular mobile payment service in the US after beating an unlikely rival

Apple Pay becomes the most popular mobile payment service in the US after beating an unlikely rival
It's no secret that the "Services" division has become crucial for Apple's financial prosperity and growth prospects during a time of stagnation for the global smartphone market that has negatively impacted both the sales numbers and profits generated by iPhones around the world. 

Before new services like Apple TV+ and Arcade can take off, the Cupertino-based tech giant is relying heavily on its iOS App Store, music streaming platform, and digital wallet solution to yield the kind of revenues investors have come to regularly expect in the last few years. Announced a little over five years ago, Apple Pay quickly emerged as a particularly impressive success story, pretty much achieving US ubiquity and processing almost a billion transactions worldwide every single month as of July

But perhaps the greatest ever achievement for the Apple-exclusive mobile payment service is beating Starbucks for first place in US usage among the nation's most popular digital wallet apps. That's right, Starbucks had dominated the charts for a number of years, according to eMarketer, despite the coffeehouse chain's mobile payment solution naturally being available at one retailer only.


Apple Pay's significantly wider support obviously helped tip the balance in its favor in 2018, when an estimated 27.7 million Americans used the app on their iPhones or iPads to complete at least one purchase at a participating store. That already remarkable number is predicted to jump to 30.3 million US users this year, which will unsurprisingly widen the gap to the 25.2 million headcount of the thriving industry's silver medalist.

In third place, you might be surprised to find Google Pay edging out Samsung Pay with 12.1 million US users compared to the latter's forecasted 10.8 million total in 2019. Of course, while Samsung phones are selling like hotcakes stateside and the company's mobile payment app supports both NFC and magnetic stripe-only POS terminals, Google Pay can be used on virtually any Android device running OS version 5.0 and up, which seems to have done wonders for the platform's adoption. 

Still, Google and Samsung are unlikely to be pleased about trailing Apple by such a huge gap in the US mobile payment service rankings for usage.



2. midan

Posts: 3097; Member since: Oct 09, 2017

Not surprised Apple Pay is one of the biggest and best things they ever done. after i got Apple Pay three years ago etc. i use it almost everywhere everyday, it's so handy. Like once a month i might have to use cash or credit card. Here in EU Apple Pay works basicly everywhere not like in US where it works there and there. Also Apple Pay failed for me like 5 times in these three years. It's very reliable and that's why people actually using it. It has to work everytime and you have to able to trust it to work.

3. Vancetastic

Posts: 1698; Member since: May 17, 2017

It's actually pretty widespread here in the US. Most major retailers accept it. It actually never failed when I used it!

15. audibot

Posts: 666; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

very suprised I personally have never ever seen an apple pay customer ever, i do get the odd samsung pay and google pay but never apple and i also get the o apple pay that doesn't work here and am like no its Samsung it works 99% everywhere.

4. Macready

Posts: 1829; Member since: Dec 08, 2014

The only thing I ever hear at checkout: "we don't support Apple Pay" (Target, Ikea, Winco, etc.). To which I reply I use a Samsung. Sometimes they tell me that they don't support mobile checkout period. To which I reply: "this may work..." And it usually does to their surprise. Yeah, no, Apple pay support isn't that great. Their marketing is better.

5. treypoundz

Posts: 92; Member since: Sep 05, 2017

Agree. I use Samsung pay every where with a success rate of 95% or more

9. TBomb

Posts: 1632; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

Doesnt Samsung pay use magnets? In which case it should work on just about any credit card swiper. I don't use mobile payments so I'm not too familiar. Something about having any financial info on a phone makes me hesitant. so no banking apps or stuff like that from me

16. audibot

Posts: 666; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

no mst you mean magnetic strip transfer just like a credit card samsung pay does both mst and nfc.

19. andynaija

Posts: 1264; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

Magnetic secure transmission (MST)

6. nikhil23

Posts: 488; Member since: Dec 07, 2016

The number of times Samsung Pay failed for me in last 3 years is 0. I use it at Target, CVS, Marianos and many other places.

10. TBomb

Posts: 1632; Member since: Dec 28, 2012

you must be from the midwest. Just moved there a few years ago and never heard of Marianos before it

12. nikhil23

Posts: 488; Member since: Dec 07, 2016

Yes I'm from midwest. It's a good chain. Fresh produce with low prices.

7. iloveapps

Posts: 909; Member since: Mar 21, 2019

This is bad for Android. They have a very big userbase but then it was apple that gets the profit most.

11. TBomb

Posts: 1632; Member since: Dec 28, 2012


17. audibot

Posts: 666; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

i think apple is including online payments using apple pay like if you buy a ticket online, and order food or amazon and others for payments

8. mrochester

Posts: 1032; Member since: Aug 17, 2014

What really bugs me are retailers who limit ALL contactless transactions to £30 even though the likes of Apple Pay are equivalent of a PIN entry transaction and should therefore have no limit. Luckily the one shop where I’m likely to be spending a lot of money in one go (Costco), has no such limit on Apple Pay transactions.

14. Vokilam

Posts: 1343; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

They don’t do that here in the US.

13. Vokilam

Posts: 1343; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

I use Apple Pay as often as I could. I don’t even bring my wallet into retailers that I know accept it. I do miss Samsung pay - it is miles ahead of Apple Pay due (thanks to Venmo). Samsung pay works everywhere! Apple does have a huge edge over Samsung pay and that’s Apple Cash - I have been relying on that feature for way too much. I now pay my helpers with apps cash and one of the soft criteria for hiring new help is whether they have an iPhone or not. Apple Cash simplified so much. They didn’t have to set up new accounts, sign into anything, none of that! Even if they never used it, all I gotta do is ask Siri to send them $1200 and they get it (they do have to agree to some terms the first time, though). So maybe that’s the edge that helped Apple. With that said, I am very surprised that Apple with its limited market share compared to android and limited function compared to Samsung is beating everyone.

18. audibot

Posts: 666; Member since: Jan 26, 2017

you may want to delete the text vokilam since you are paying people helpers by cash thats illegal via tax code so be careful it does not come bite you in the butt later.

20. Vokilam

Posts: 1343; Member since: Mar 15, 2018

I appreciate that. But I do give them (and my subs) 1099 forms at the end of the year. What I meant by "cash" was form of payment, not form of tax evasion..

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