Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (NYSE:WMT) recently announced it won’t join the new Apply Pay, instead it plans to continue developing a separate system that will compete directly with Apple’s payment system.
Wal-Mart won’t join Apple Pay
Despite the fact both companies have a huge presence in the market place but it is still important to point out key differences. Wal-Mart is one of this nation’s largest retailers and has a customer base that surpasses Apple’s. What’s more is that the retail giant is already a part of a mobile payment company called CurrenC. This group already has other brands including the The Gap Inc. (NYSE:GPS), Target Corporation (NYSE:TGT), 7-Eleven, Royal Dutch Shell plc (ADR) (NYSE:RDS.A) (NYSE:RDS.B), and Southwest Airlines.
Apple already dominates the smartphone market. The perennially popular iPhone is used by tens of millions of people in the United States. For it’s mobile payment system, the tech giant has also partnered with a wide range of finance institutions and major retailers such as Disney, Macy’s, and McDonald’s.
The growing mobile payments industry
An expert retail consultant from Kurt Salmon Associates, Michael Archer, explained there will be a dominant player coming from CurrentC competing with Apple. Although he declined to mention which company would most likely prevail, he explained the interest level in space will continue to be challenged if there are two competing companies. There is an opportunity for convergence.
Apple Pay will officially launch next month in the United States. CurrenC starts as a pilot program later in September with a nationwide roll-out in 2015.
Wal-Mart’s representatives claimed the company had no plans to join the new Apple Pay but declined to say anything beyond that. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) also declined to comment on the matter. Surprisingly, retailers may have a stronger incentive to choose CurrenC rather than Apple Pay. The former could impose a significant change to the current credit and debit system if it is broadly adopted.