Target Working on QR Code Mobile Wallet as Apple Pay Holdout Continues

Target is in early stages of developing its own mobile wallet solution that could launch as early as next year, according to Reuters. The fourth-largest U.S. retailer is leaning towards using QR code technology for the payments app, rather than NFC, enabling customers to purchase goods by scanning a code at checkout akin to Walmart Pay announced last week.

Target is working on a mobile wallet for use at checkout (Image: MADELINECOYNE)

The retailer reportedly plans to integrate the mobile wallet into its existing app available on iOS and Android, and will directly link customers’ credit cards for payments. The wallet will likely support both Target’s Red store credit and debit cards and ones from other issuers. Target does not currently accept any mobile wallets in it stores, but does support Apple Pay in its iPhone and iPad app.

Target’s plans to launch its own mobile wallet raise questions about its commitment to rival payment platforms. A company spokesperson confirmed that Target remains an active member of the Merchant Customer Exchange, a consortium of retailers developing the payments system CurrentC, and the retailer is also exploring additional mobile wallet solutions, according to the report.

Target CEO Brian Cornell said in May that the retailer is „open-minded“ about supporting Apple Pay or other payment services after upgrading its point-of-sale systems with chip-and-PIN card support, but the company has not announced any specific plans since. A few other MCX retailers including Best Buy and Rite Aid have already reversed course and started accepting Apple Pay this year.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tags: MCX, CurrentC, Target
Discuss this article in our forums

Прочетете повече

Apple Moving to 100% Renewable Energy in Singapore, Confirms New Retail Store

Apple today announced a deal to move all of its operations in Singapore to 100 percent renewable energy, working with partner Sunseap Group to take advantage of rooftops in the densely populated city-state for solar power generation, reports Reuters.

Starting in January, solar energy developer Sunseap Group will provide Apple with 100 percent renewable electricity from its portfolio of solar energy systems built atop more than 800 buildings in Singapore.

The deal will make Apple the first company in Singapore to run exclusively on renewable energy and marks a significant step in its bid to power 100 percent of its facilities and operations worldwide with clean fuel.

The Sunseap project, made possible through financing from Apple, will generate a total of 50 megawatts of solar power from rooftops, with approximately 33 megawatts going to Apple and the remainder being used for other customers including public housing.

Photo via Sunseap Group

As part of today’s announcement, Apple also confirmed it is working toward opening its first retail store in Singapore, although it did not provide a timeframe for the store’s opening.

Word of an Apple store in Singapore surfaced last month when fitness chain Pure Fitness announced its location in the Knightsbridge shopping center will be closing next month to make way for an Apple store planned to open in late 2016. Four other stores in the center are also moving out to help make room for Apple. The company began hiring for one or more retail stores in Singapore late last week.
Discuss this article in our forums

Прочетете повече

Apple to Create 1,000 New Jobs in Ireland Amid Tax Probe

Apple plans to hire an additional 1,000 employees at its Cork offices in Ireland, a country where the iPhone maker shelters multi-billion-dollar profits from corporate taxes in the United States, according to Reuters.

Apple’s offices in Cork, Ireland

Ireland’s main foreign investment agency, the IDA, said Apple was to add 1,000 jobs to its office in Cork by mid-2017 from 5,000 at present. It said the company had also added 1,000 jobs in the past year.

In September 2014, the European Commission accused Apple of receiving illegal state aid from Ireland in return for maintaining jobs. A decision in the investigation is due after Christmas, according to Ireland’s finance minister Michael Noonan.

Apple has paid a corporate tax rate of about 2.5% in Ireland on $109 billion in profits over the past five years, far less than an average 12.5% paid by many other companies in the country. The U.S. has an average corporate tax rate of about 15% to 39%.

Tags: Apple, Ireland, Cork
Discuss this article in our forums

Прочетете повече

Apple Asks U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Guilty Verdict in E-Books Antitrust Case

Apple is asking the United States Supreme Court to overturn the 2013 U.S. Appellate Court ruling that found the company guilty of conspiring with publishers to inflate the prices of e-books, reports Reuters.

Apple’s petition comes following the loss of a June appeal where the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit upheld the guilty verdict and maintained Apple violated antitrust laws and colluded with five publishers – HarperCollins, Simon and Schuster, Hachette Book Group, Macmillan, and Penguin – to fix e-book prices and unreasonably restrain trade.

Apple in its petition said the June decision by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York contradicted Supreme Court precedent and would „chill innovation and risktaking.“

„The Second Circuit’s decision will harm competition and the national economy,“ Apple wrote.

Should the U.S. Supreme Court uphold the lower court’s verdict, Apple will be forced to pay $450 million as part of a settlement with class action lawyers and state district attorneys, with $400 million of that amount earmarked for consumers. Apple reached the settlement in June of 2014 to avoid a lengthy damages trial, but the payout hinged on the outcome of the company’s appeal.

Though Apple was found guilty, the company has maintained its innocence throughout the dispute. In its appeal, Apple said its efforts „kick-started competition“ to deliver „higher output, lower price levels, and accelerated innovation.“

Tags: lawsuit, antitrust, e-books

Discuss this article in our forums

Прочетете повече

Huawei Challenges Apple and Samsung as Third-Largest Smartphone Maker

While the smartphone market largely remains a two-horse race between rivals Apple and Samsung, Chinese handset maker Huawei is placing increasing pressure on the industry giants after experiencing strong growth in China and Europe in 2015.

Third-quarter deliveries climbed 81 percent and 98 percent in China and Europe respectively from a year ago. About a third of the quarterly shipments were mid- to high-end models, Huawei said, up from 25 percent a year earlier.

Huawei cemented its position as the third-largest smartphone vendor, a rank that previously belonged to Chinese rival Xiaomi, after its third-quarter smartphone shipments rose 63% year-over-year to 27.4 million handsets, according to Reuters.

„It’s hard to find a solid contender to Huawei for the top three position (after Samsung and Apple) in the short term,“ said Nicole Peng, Asia Pacific director at research firm Canalys. „That’s impressive growth.“

Huawei is projected to ship more than 100 million smartphones in 2015, around 33% more than 2014, outpacing growth forecast for major rivals including Apple, Xiaomi and Lenovo. The Shenzhen-based handset maker also doubled its smartphone revenue in the first half of 2015 in China, a key smartphone market alongside the United States.

Nevertheless, Huawei remains a distant third behind Apple and Samsung, largely because its market penetration remains low in the U.S., where its devices were once labeled a security risk in a U.S. Congressional report. Huawei’s smartphone market share was worth $7 billion in the second quarter, according to Canalys.



Прочетете повече

Apple to offer domestic Xcode downloads in China, after recent App Store malware outbreak

Developers in China say slow connection speeds to Apple’s overseas servers forced them to download its Xcode dev tools from unofficial (and malware-infected) sources – but Apple is now making changes. Read more…

Прочетете повече

Apple Making Big Hiring Push in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

Apple is stepping up its efforts to recruit employees focused on artificial intelligence and machine learning, reports Reuters. The report suggests Apple is looking to challenge Google’s lead in features such as Google Now that learn to anticipate smartphone users’ needs, something Apple is starting to address in iOS 9 with its new „Proactive“ feature.

As part of its push, the company is currently trying to hire at least 86 more employees with expertise in the branch of artificial intelligence known as machine learning, according to a recent analysis of Apple job postings. The company has also stepped up its courtship of machine-learning PhD’s, joining Google, Amazon, Facebook and others in a fierce contest, leading academics say.

Apple’s machine learning efforts are in large part built with Siri in mind, and Siri should play an important role in this Wednesday’s media event, as indicated by the event invitation’s tagline.

Reuters notes that Apple faces a challenge with machine learning due to its focus on privacy and reluctance to tap into all possible data sources. For example, with the Proactive features of iOS 9, Apple is primarily keeping all of the data and analysis on the user’s phone, enhancing privacy but limiting some of what can be learned from data passed to the cloud.

Apple’s strict policies not only limit what can be learned from user data but also discourage some machine learning experts from pursuing positions with Apple due to that lack of access. Still, Apple is said to be opening up about machine learning, engaging with academic programs in its efforts to lure talent and already having tripled or quadrupled the size of its machine learning team over the last few years.



Прочетете повече