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Apple’s Biggest Product of 2014: Pay

Although Apple has just released the most dramatic change in its iPhone product line in history and introduced the entirely new Watch, perhaps its most disruptive products this year are its intangible ones. During its WWDC (Worldwide Developers Conference) this summer, Apple showed off its most exciting efforts in improving its software platform by designing an entirely new and modern programming language, Swift, and giving iOS the ability to be the hub for your health statistics and smart home accessories. Pay, Apple’s new payment platform, however,may be the most intriguing service yet.

Every three weeks there seems to be news of new digital security breaches, such as the Home Depot’s recent hack-in, that expose the credit card numbers of hundreds of thousands of consumers. Worst of all, customers are often notified months after the actual theft of sensitive data, leaving cybercriminals large windows to commit fraud. Pay aims to fix this issue by allowing consumers to pay with their iPhones and establishing a system in which your private information isn’t even directly used to make purchases at the cash register. Instead, a 128-bit security code is generated and used instead of actual credit card numbers, forcing would-be hackers to jump through several more hoops without giving grief to users. Sealing this whole process is Touch ID, which is used to confirm all transactions. While it certainly is possible to crack this system, it is a hundred times more difficult to hack than all other existing payment methods.

Ever since Android devices became legitimately competitive with Apple’s products, software began trumping hardware when it came to distinguishing characteristics. Even though critics have slammed Apple’s hardware choices, Apple’s app ecosystem and rock-solid software platforms have remained practically free of criticisms. Should this trend continue, Apple’s software, such as Pay, will keep people buying iPhones.

How to type the  in Pay: option-shift-k  (This only works on Apple computers.)

Written by Raymond Cao’17



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