Mobile devices

Published on March 10th, 2015 | by Diogo Costa


Apple Watch to Take Apple Pay to Older iPhones

With today’s presentation of the Apple Watch, some rumors have been clarified and confirmed. One of the biggest doubts was to understand how this gadget would relate with Apple Pay, but now we know that the Watch will ensure access to Apple Pay on older iPhone models, like the 5, 5C e 5S.

Since its first presentation, it has been assured that Apple’s payment system would be supported by their smartwatch, but it was never clear if those operations would depend on a smartphone or if they would be completely independent.

Now we know that the Apple Watch will have the ability to make payments and act (almost) independently, needing to communicate with the iPhone only to ensure a proper processing of transactions. This way, it becomes possible for iPhone 5, 5C and 5S to use Apple’s payment system, as long as they are connected to an Apple Watch.

By being able to communicate directly with payment terminals, the Apple Watch ends up being able to add the older iPhone models that little extra functionality that they had missing. The limitation of using Apple Pay on older models of the iPhone has to do with the absence of the NFC (Near Field Communication) technology on them, something that is assured in the Apple Watch. The communication between the iPhone and the Watch will be performed using Bluetooth and the rest of the communications between the payment terminal and the Watch will be made using NFC.

Using the Apple Watch to make these sort of payments requires an initial authentication, made directly on the iPhone, using a pin or the Touch ID, which unlocks its use. After this process, following payments and the necessary communications will be automatically authorized.

Apple is surely expecting that this link between their smartwatch and older iPhone models brings up the use of their payment service as, according to research carried out by Trustev, almost 80% of iPhone users with access to Apple Pay have never tried it.

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