Android loyalists and Apple bashers are quick to point out that Apple is actually late to the NFC party. That is true. As I mentioned above, NFC technology has been available on competing mobile devices, and mobile payments have existed on rival platforms for some time. The major difference is that Apple has the support and momentum to make it mainstream. Apple has enlisted Visa, Mastercard, and American Express — which account for more than 80 percent of the credit cards in use — as well as individual banks, including Bank of America, Capital One, Chase, and CitiBank, with more on the way.
Apple boasts that there are 220,000 stores ready to support Apple Pay. That sounds impressive, but it's a drop in the bucket, more or less, when weighed against all of the possible stores and retailers. The bad news is that Apple Pay won't be available everywhere you shop, but Apple has a plethora of major retailers on board, including Walgreens, McDonald's, Petco, Staples, and Subway. Apple Pay will also work within iOS through third-party apps like Target, Panera, and Starbucks.
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