What would you do if Apple added a feature that made your startup obsolete?

A customer uses Tay to Pay on iPhone to buy fruit at the farmer’s market.
Apple

Tech founders bite their nails before Apple events.

  • They don’t care about the new home screens.
  • They don’t care about the new erasable messages.
  • They don’t care about the new ways you can share your dog photos.

They care about Apple making their business obsolete.

This week was no different.

WWDC made life a whole lot harder for at least 15 startups.

Apple Pay Later

Buy now, pay later. No interest.

You know that feeling when you see something stunning, but you just can’t afford to pay fully right now and you’d really hate to load it onto the credit card?

It’s awful.

  • For you, because you have to save up.
  • For the business that could have had a sale.

A couple of smart people saw this as a great opportunity for a startup.

The idea goes something like this:

  1. You enter an online store.
  2. You see something you like.
  3. But it costs $499 and you only have $323.87 in your account.
  4. But right below the button that says add to cart, there is a line that says that they have a buy now, pay later option.
  5. You checkout through that button and they do a quick credit check to let you know you got it. Some pay later providers charge you interest; others don’t.
  6. You pay your first $125, get your product and pay the rest later.
  7. The pay later provider charges the business a big fat 4–6% commission fee.

It’s a loan, but clever marketers phrase it as buy now, pay later.

Hilarious.

Apple just disrupted this business model at its core by doing what they do best: Simplifying things.

An iPhone shows the new Apple Pay Later option for a purchase.
Apple

Apple cuts the complications for customers and the businesses.

Customers:

  • Pay no fees.
  • Pay no interest.
  • Pay little now, the rest over 6 weeks.

Businesses connected to Apple Pay-supported payment providers:

  • Pay no extra commission fees.
  • Need no extra payment plugins or API connections.

Brands most affected:

  • Afterpay
  • Klarna
  • Affirm
  • Sezzle
  • Splitit
  • Perpay

As a luxury e-commerce store owner, the big question is why pay the extra commission for any of these services if I can just implement the exact same features delivered by simpler Apple using my existing Stripe integration when most of my customers purchase with Apple devices?

It just doesn’t make sense.

Freeform

A minimalist collaboration whiteboard.

Throughout the work-from-home epidemic, many creatives felt like they needed tools where they could brainstorm their very best ideas together on digital whiteboards in real-time.

This led to a flurry of new brands exploding as their tools made perfect sense for a remote world. But after reading a couple of reviews, it is clear that many of these experiences weren’t as seamless as they once seemed.

Apple being Apple, decided it wants to bring the world its take on a friction-free collaboration tool and just launched a brand new app called Freeform.

An iPad screen shows Apple’s new Freeform collaboration app.
Apple

Freeform is a powerful new collaboration tool with a customizable canvas that allows users to view, share, and work in one location without having to worry about layouts or page sizes, and it also supports Apple Pencil.

Users can see other people’s contributions as they upload information or make changes, all while working in a real-time environment.

Freeform also enables collaborators to start a session from FaceTime and view updates from others in the Messages thread.

Best of all, it works on iPad, iPhone, and Mac.

But it’s clear that this is an app primarily focused on the iPad.

Brands most affected:

  • Mural
  • Figjam
  • Miro
  • Whimsical

Passkey

The end of the password as we know it?

Are you using the same password twice?

Guilty!

Password-only login is one of the most serious security issues on the internet, and storing so many passwords is inconvenient, leading many of us to reuse the same ones across several sites.

Hackers take advantage of these vulnerabilities. They lock victims out of accounts to steal sensitive data, ask for ransoms, or in some cases even steal money.

It all got so bad that the password manager was born.

Many password managers use fear-based marketing. Up until today, these companies have scared people into using expensive password management services to keep a couple of precious passwords safe from prying eyes.

But Apple has other plans.

While it admits that password managers and traditional types of two-factor authentication provide modest advances, it partnered with Google, and Microsoft on a mission to kill the password.

Their master plan is to create a passwordless web.

It would likely work like this:

  1. You scan a QR code on a website using your iPhone or iPad.
  2. You authenticate with Touch ID or Face ID.
  3. Apple sends a public key via a Web Authentication API to approve the sign-in and you’re in.

This will be even easier when you’re using a Touch ID or Face ID capable device. The app you’re trying to access directly pushes a passkey verification and you simply authenticate it with your face or your finger.

So who needs a password manager if they don’t have a password?

Brands most affected:

  • LastPass
  • Dashlane
  • 1Password
  • LogMeOnce
  • Keeper

Tap to pay

Tap a wireless card or iPhone against an iPhone to pay.

Many times small businesses don’t have POS payment terminals — especially when they’re providing out-of-office services like a nanny or a locksmith.

Many companies have figured out ways to get past that by creating mobile POS payment terminals that people can take with them to receive card payments while on the move.

The problem with these systems is that you need to carry around extra hardware. This makes life more complicated than it should be.

In a bold move, Apple just turned the iPhone into a mobile POS system eliminating the need for any extra hardware.

Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet, said:

“As more and more consumers are tapping to pay with digital wallets and credit cards, Tap to Pay on iPhone will provide businesses with a secure, private, and easy way to accept contactless payments and unlock new checkout experiences using the power, security, and convenience of iPhone.”

A customer uses Tay to Pay on iPhone to buy plants at the farmer’s market.
Apple

“In collaboration with payment platforms, app developers, and payment networks, we’re making it easier than ever for businesses of all sizes — from solopreneurs to large retailers — to seamlessly accept contactless payments and continue to grow their business,” she continued.

If an iPhone can be a mobile POS, why carry around extra hardware?

Brands most affected:

  • Square
  • Clover Go
  • Toast

The fight is definitely not over yet. I look forward to seeing how the brands that were affected most will pivot moving forward before Apple gobbles up their customers.

Let me know about any other brands you think we should be worried about.

Originally Appeared here

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