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Apple Gets Bigger Slice of Mobile Payment Pie

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Companies that both develop and use the new type of credit card payment processing platform that allows businesses to accept purchases using mobile devices are leaning more heavily on the operating system popularized by Apple.

As the mobile credit card processing industry continues to grow quickly, more companies are jumping into the development of their own applications and hardware, and most of those companies are using Apple’s popular iOS platform to do it, according to a report from Mac World. The reason for this may simply be that Apple’s products take up a larger share of the market. The iPhone is the most popular smartphone in the country, and sales of Apple’s iPad tablet are through the roof.

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For developers, that means there is a built-in market that may not exist for other mobile operating systems, the report said. And for companies that would use these payment processors to accept customers’ card purchases without going through traditional payment giants like Visa or MasterCard, it may simply be easier to adopt Apple’s products.

“We took on the iPad because they’re selling like hotcakes,” Twistee Treat CEO Corey Balzer told the site. “For us, because we’re a 30-year-old brand, it really updated our brand overnight. The more Apple does – obviously they’re doing pretty well – we’re piggybacking off of that.”

However, smaller businesses may see these platforms as a cheaper means of processing card payments, the report said. In many cases, Visa and MasterCard charge a fee just to give businesses the ability to accept cards, which can be too burdensome for smaller companies with thin margins. As a consequence, many opted to be cash-only, but are now open to the more affordable options granted to them by these mobile card readers.

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Four of the most popular of these platforms were developed for iOS and have, in some cases, expanded to other mobile operating systems, the report said. The best-known names – Square, Intuit’s GoPayment, VeriFone’s Payware and PayPal Here – all have iOS apps that turn any Apple device into a mobile credit card reader.

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This type of payment processing is really taking off because it not only grants flexibility to small businesses, but also allows bigger companies to eschew traditional point-of-sale card readers and allow greater convenience for customers.

Image: Rob Pongsajapan, via Flickr

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