💳 Paying with a smartphone is actually more secure and more efficient than using a credit card.
👉 When Apple PAY was first announced back in 2014, it seemed like a revolutionary idea that would take a while to catch on. Six years later, a little under half the iPhone users out there are paying with their phone, with Google and Samsung Pay growing on Android as well. Apple Pay currently accounts for 10 percent of all global card transactions.
If you aren’t using Apple and Google Pay at the grocery store, it’s time to start—it’s better than a credit card in pretty much every way.
❗ It’s much faster than chip-based credit cards
To start, credit cards have gotten slow, thanks to the new chip-based readers. This new (old) tech is much slower than the old swipe-to-pay credit cards of yore, making plastic a bit more of a hassle.
👆 With Apple and Google Pay, you just pull out your phone, unlock the home screen, and hover it over the reader—it’ll “swipe” your digital credit card instantaneously, faster than any chip-based card. You don’t even have to open the app—just unlock your phone and tap. If you have a smartwatch, you might be able to tap it to the reader without even touching your phone.
🔺You still get your credit card points
❓ Whenever I evangelize Apple and Google Pay to friends, I get the same question: “But what about my credit card points?” This is a misunderstanding of how these services work. You aren’t paying Apple, who then pays the retailer. When you tap your phone to pay, it works exactly as if you’d scanned your credit card—the charge shows up on your Visa bill and you get all the points you’re entitled to.
🔐 It’s secure
Finally, as with all things digital, some folks are hesitant to switch to a service they aren’t familiar with—especially since digital security hasn’t had the most confidence-inducing decade.
❕ But credit cards haven’t exactly been bastions of security either—as anyone who’s had their card stolen will tell you. In some ways, Apple and Google Pay are actually more secure than their plastic counterparts. Both services use tokenization, creating a unique code whenever you make a purchase—the merchant never sees your credit card number, and even if a thief were to somehow steal that code, they wouldn’t be able to use it to make more purchases. This is the same enhanced security your credit card’s chip uses.
For some reason, though, our credit card chips don’t require PIN numbers like they do overseas, so if anyone steals your card, they can make purchases for you. Apple and Google Pay, on the other hand, are locked behind the fingerprint sensor or face recognition on your device, adding an extra layer of security that credit cards don’t have. So even if someone were to steal your phone, they’d have a hard time using it for a Best Buy shopping spree. Oh, and if you lose your phone, you can turn your digital wallet off remotely with Find My iPhone and Google’s Find My Device.
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