Apple Pay person-to-person payments: Cupertino’s Venmo killer

“Apple is beefing up its mobile wallet with the addition of a Venmo-like payments service that lets users send money to each other, the company announced on Monday at its annual WWDC developer conference,” Leena Rao reports for Fortune. “The new payments service is part of Apple Pay.”

“The new payments service is similar to Venmo, the PayPal-owned payments app that has become popular with younger users to make small, cashless transfers, such as paying a friend for dinner, using a mobile phone,” Rao reports. “PayPal has said Venmo is one of its fastest growing services, with Venmo processing more than $17.6 billion in payments in 2016, up 135% from the previous year.”

“The feature will be released as part of Apple’s newest version of its mobile software, iOS 11. One big differentiator with Venmo is that Apple’s payments service only allows users to send money to others who have an iPhone or iPad,” Rao reports. “Users will not be able to send money to people who have Android devices.”

“Another key differentiator between Apple Pay’s iMessage-based service and Venmo is that users don’t have to make these payments through a separate app, like with Venmo,” Rao reports. “Apple also doesn’t have the burden of having to make money from payments by taking a cut of every transaction. PayPal on the other hand, has been trying to make money from Venmo by charging merchants fees to use the service to accept payments.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Payment services need people with money and the will to spend it. You know, like Apple product owners. P2P Apple Pay will flourish. And, if Apple ever decides to open this up to fragmandroid settlers, buh-bye Venmo et al.


  1. I’m really excited for this. Next step will be Apple allowing users to recharge those cash cards and use them in contactless payments of their own methinks.

  2. “Users will not be able to send money to people who have Android devices.”
    Just plain dumb.
    This single limitation makes it dead in the water for me. Most of my friends use Droids, meaning Venmo will remain the go to App. Period.

    1. That’s unfortunate for you. In the circle of friends, colleagues, family and relatives around me, I can’t think of a single android owner. I would never need Venmo.

      Can’t wait to get it.

      1. Clearly it is sensible to start this by offering to those within the Apple environment, indeed a no brainer and is the way that Apple has traditionally done things. If it becomes worthwhile to offer this beyond those users then it will come at some stage, but clearly the need to not charge a fee is because it is aimed at promoting sales of the product so as to more than offset that. If it was open to anyone then they would not gain that compensation so its right that Apple users should get the benefit first and for some time thereafter rather than make them pay indirectly for the benefit of non Apple users as nothing is a free lunch.

        1. Looking into Venmo, it appears to work like paypal between non-business users with Venmo/Paypal taking no fees from the transaction if from venmo/bank balance or debit card. 3% if drawing from a linked credit card. Otherwise, like Apple Pay, Venmo only gets fees when it is used to make payments to businesses. Apple users are not restricted from using Venmo so if you have non-Apple friends and family Venmo is still a very strong alternative p2p payment system. Currently the only ‘advantage’ to Apple’s p2p payment is that unlike Venmo it is restricted to iOS users.

          1. There are two major advantages that I can see right away. First, security; everything about ApplePay is within Apple’s ecosystem, encrypted and protected. There is a reason Apple NEVER had a data breach yet (and no, celebrity iCloud account hacking wasn’t Apple’s responsibility; people guessed the correct password and logged in).

            Second is privacy. PayPal sells customer data. For Apple, software and services aren’t money-making products; hardware is. Thanks to their industry-leading profit margins on hardware, they can afford NOT to have to share/sell customer data with anyone.

            Restricting P2P payments to Apple makes it much more appealing for me, as I know that my payment information won’t leak somewhere through the swiss-cheese security of someone else’s unpatched Android device (when an Android user attempts to send me a payment).

            1. Agreed Apple Pay as a whole is secure. Venmo’s P2P appears to be very secure also since no actual card/bank info is ever used in the transaction.

              As for privacy, you are correct. Venmo isn’t about privacy but the social aspect of P2P so you can share with your friends the transactions that you wish to share. This is actually a ‘benefit’ announced to businesses that create accounts to accept Venmo transactions. It’s not something Venmo is selling but providing as a service if as a user to make use of it.

              That’s good Apple Pay fits your lifestyle. Venmo appears to fit a different market which is not necessarily ‘bad’.

  3. I’d be excited if there were places to use it. The problem is most places don’t accept Apple Pay. Or if they do, their staff doesn’t know it and has no idea how to trigger it. Only one of the four grocery stores in my area accepts ApplePay and part of the time they don’t know how to operate it. Apple needs a way to send money out to your bank account. So are they going to charge people transaction fees?

    1. This P2P (peer-to-peer) money transfer service has nothing to do with merchants. It is meant for person-to-person transfers.

      In my area (Manhattan), I can’t remember when was the last time I didn’t pay with my phone. CVS and Target are about the only stubborn ones. Every little mom-n-pop shop is accepting it already.

    2. Didn’t Apple say by the end of this year 50% of businesses in the US will be accepting Apple Pay? That seems like a tipping point to me. Over the next year or so I would expect many more people will be using Apple Pay than traditional payment cards, especially as cc fraud continues to escalate. My mom and dad just has to cancel their second card this year because of fraud.

    3. bbock, you’re overthinking things here. If the store has a contactless pay terminal, just use it. Chances are good Apple Pay will work. By the way, there is no “triggering” or special “operating” procedure. Just tell the clerk what card you’re using and go for it.

      1. Went to local merchant and at the register asked if they used Apple Pay. I pulled out my phone as she said, “I don’t know, how does it work?” I had just touched my fingerprint reader and the receipt began to print out on her register, much to her surprise. I said “That’s how it works.” She said, “Wow that was fast!” I said, “Yep. That’s Apple Pay.”

        1. Yesterday at the market I saw the woman ahead of me use Samsung Pay on her Galaxy S7 to make a payment on a POS reader that didn’t support chip nor NFC. Needless to say the cashier was surprised.

          1. While it’s nice on some level there’s that backwards compatibility, the key word in that is “backwards”. The horrendously insecure magstripe needs to go the way of the dinosaur ASAP due to fraud, the credit card backers have shifted fraud liability to the merchants, and Samsung offering this is exactly the wrong thing to do.

            1. Swiping a card on that same POS terminal would still be just as ‘unsafe’ but at least there is that compatibility for Samsung Pay’s eWallet that differentiates from the other eWallet payment systems. Obviously it is useful to some. I understand there’s a rewards system in Samsung Pay in addition to what the attached credit cards offer too. Perhaps that was incentive for the woman to use it over simple swiping.

            2. For sure swiping a card is just as insecure, that’s kind of my point, it has to go. For the end user there’s little risk; if it’s stolen, the liability is never on them (barring failure to report stolen card in a timely manner), it’s either the card issuer or the business that takes the hit.

              In pretty much the rest of the developed world, POS terminals still have swipe enabled pretty much just for visiting Americans, the rest of the world moved on to chips and NFC a long time ago.

    4. It’s hardly Apple’s fault (or indeed any other contactless service) that America is so behind in the terminals merchants have. Long before Apple Pay UK terminals were ready for contactless, it just happened. There is a limit on spending, but it’s just there.

      1. I heard that the limit on ApplePay has been recently lifted. About two weeks ago, there was an update for terminal software that included a removal of £30 maximum amount for ApplePay transactions. The limit is still there for chip-PIN cards (for transactions that don’t require PIN).

        The whole issue with the limit was because terminal software in the UK wasn’t ready for the specific nature of ApplePay. The NFC payment was treated exactly the same way as a chip card transaction without a signature, so there was the limit. Now that the PoS makers finally realised (two and a half years later!) that ApplePay has much more reliable authentication than PIN (a person’s biometric data), they updated the software to eliminate the limit for ApplePay. Most of the UK merchants have already updated their PoS (Point-of-Sale) software.

  4. Boy, Apple hates Android. That is totally apparent. Well, I guess they can do what they want, but t will limit their market. Guess they just don’t give a shit, as usual.

    And to you other losers telling that dude to get new friends, because they use Android, quit being so myopic. It doesn’t suit you.

  5. If you use a credit card will it show as withdrawing cash? If not and therefore not subject to those charges that could be a good way of getting a cheap loan. Get a long 0% interest purchases card and send the money to yourself.

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