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Apple's long-rumored push into the online checkout world became a reality today when it announced Apple Pay payments will come to the web this fall as part of an update to the Mac operating system the company has dubbed macOS Sierra.
What's even more impactful about Apple's move into online checkout is that shoppers can confirm Apple Pay Safari browser purchases through their Touch ID-compatible devices. Such a system is seen as an efficient way for retailers to combat online fraud, which has exploded worldwide in recent years as countries migrated to EMV payment cards.
"Banks, retailers and consumers desparately want a way to make online shopping safer, and integrating Apple Pay's fingerprint sensor technology is an important step toward doing just that," Matt Schulz, CreditCards.com senior industry analyst, said in an email to Mobile Payments Today.
Apple made the announcement Monday in San Francisco as part of its World Wide Developers Conference.
An initial downside to Apple Pay Safari payments is that it's only available within Apple's universe. Potential users must use a Mac computer with the Sierra upgrade, visit a participating retailer's website through the Safari browser, and own an Apple device with Touch ID. While those restrictions might seem counterproductive to widespread adoption, millions of consumers worldwide have bought into Apple's ecosystem of products and services.
"This is not about payments, it is about making the shopping experience as simple as possible for consumers," Ajay Kapur, CEO and founder of e-commerce services provider Moovweb, told Mobile Payments Today in an email. "We feel this innovation will change the game for retailers and give them the weapon they need to compete with Amazon."
Moovweb recently announced a $10 million investment in its own platform to help its retail partners get ready for Apple Pay web payments.
Shopify also announced it will help its 275,000 small and medium-sized business partners become eligible for Apple Pay web payments.
To recap, let's take a quick look at three Apple Pay/mobile payments-related news to come out of WWDC today in San Francisco.
Apple also expects to roll out Apple Pay this summer in three more countries: France, Hong Kong and Switzerland.