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Report: Apple Pay fees for Chinese banks half what they are in U.S.

apple-pay-china

Chinese site Caixin reports that Apple has agreed to take much smaller fees from banks in China compared to the US as the company this month launches its Apple Pay payments service in the country.

The deal with Chinese banks will see Apple get around 0.07 percent per transaction, according to the report citing unnamed sources, compared to approximately 0.15 percent it’s charging banks in the US.

Apple Inc. will earn fees from Chinese banks when customers use its mobile payment service for purchases, but they will be about half of what the U.S. tech giant charges in the United States, people with knowledge of the matter say… Apple will start collecting the fees in two years. Apple started negotiating with major Chinese banks and UnionPay over profit-sharing and technical issues in 2014. The talks stalled, apparently because Chinese banks argued the charges were too steep.

Caixin adds that sources say new banks signing on with Apple in to support Apple Pay in the country might not get the same lower fee and that the agreement with the initial launch group of banks was “a result of compromise from both sides” in an effort to get the service launched.

“These 19 banks will pay Apple the fees at a discount, but banks that get on board later may not have the leverage anymore,” a person with the knowledge of the mater said.

The report follows an official launch of Apple Pay in China last with card issuer China UnionPay and around 19 banks. The launch saw a rush of around 10 million users signing up in the first hour, according to local reports, and close to 40 million on day one. Apple is going up against Chinese market leader Alipay, reported to have approximately 400M users. 

The launch of Apple Pay in China adds it to the list of supported Apple Pay countries alongside the US, the UK, Canada, and Australia.


Filed under: iOS Devices Tagged: 0.07 percent, 0.15, Apple pay, banks, china, credit cards, Fees, Tim Cook, UnionPay, US

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Jordan Kahn

February 22nd

Apple

Mac

Apple at center stage of Republican presidential debate over encryption & national security

Tim Cook Stage

Apple’s strong position on privacy and encryption has been at odds with the United States government’s pressure to step up its national security efforts in the wake of recent terrorist attacks across the globe. In short, iPhones are encrypted to protect customer data from prying eyes, and law enforcement agencies believe that gives criminals a safe haven for communication that can’t be traced.

The Obama administration including the former and current attorney general and FBI director have strongly voiced opposition to Apple’s position, and Tim Cook reportedly pressed the White House to back strong encryption as recently as this week. So it’s no surprise that Tim Cook and Apple came up at the end of last night’s Republican presidential debate hosted by the Fox Business channel where at least one candidate was asked to address his position on the subject.

Specifically, Apple Watch aficionado and former Florida governor Jeb Bush, who responded similarly to how the current administration has thus far, was asked how he’d handle Tim Cook and encryption by Fox Business host Neil Cavuto. Let’s take a look at his response with a little help from TIME’s transcript:

CAVUTO: Governor Bush, fears have gripped this country obviously, and you touched on it earlier since the San Bernardino attacks. Since our last debate, the national conversation has changed, according to Facebook data as well.

Now this first graphic shows the issues that were most talked about right before those attacks and now after: the issues of Islam, homeland security and ISIS now loom very large. The FBI says Islamic radicals are using social media to communicate and that it needs better access to communication. Now the CEO of Apple, Governor, Tim Cook said unless served with a warrant private communication is private, period. Do you agree, or would you try to convince him otherwise?

BUSH: I would try to convince him otherwise, but this last back and forth between two senators — back bench senators, you know, explains why we have the mess in Washington, D.C. We need a president that will fix our immigration laws and stick with it, not bend with the wind.

The simple fact is one of the ways, Maria, to solve the problem you described is narrow the number of people coming by family petitioning to what every other country has so that we have the best and the brightest that come to our country. We need to control the border, we need to do all of this in a comprehensive way, not just going back and forth and talking about stuff —

CAVUTO: Would you answer this question?

BUSH: Oh, I’ll talk about that, too. But you haven’t asked me a question in a while, Neil, so I thought I’d get that off my chest if you don’t mind.

(LAUGHTER)

Governor Bush did add that Apple should have some “liability release” if loosening encryption goes bad, although Tim Cook’s stake on privacy thus far seems more about principle and not lawsuits. (My guess is it might be legally more tricky in the case of law enforcement as we’re seeing play out.)

CAVUTO: Fair enough. So Tim Cook — so Tim Cook says he’s going to keep it private.

BUSH: I got that. And the problem today is there’s no confidence in Washington, D.C. There needs to be more than one meeting, there needs to complete dialogue with the large technology companies. They understand that there’s a national security risk. We ought to give them a little bit of a liability release so that they share data amongst themselves and share data with the federal government, they’re not fearful of a lawsuit.

We need to make sure that we keep the country safe. This is the first priority. The cybersecurity challenges that we face, this administration failed us completely, completely. Not just the hacking of OPM, but that is — that is just shameful. 23 million files in the hands of the Chinese? So it’s not just the government — the private sector companies, it’s also our own government that needs to raise the level of our game.

We should put the NSA in charge of the civilian side of this as well. That expertise needs to spread all across the government and there needs to be much more cooperation with our private sector.

CAVUTO: But if Tim cook is telling you no, Mr. President.

BUSH: You’ve got to keep asking. You’ve got to keep asking because this is a hugely important issue. If you can encrypt messages, ISIS can, over these platforms, and we have no ability to have a cooperative relationship —

Governor Bush then alluded to that idea that even if the US government required Apple to open up its tight encryption and let law enforcement officials peek at data, there’d still be the issue of terrorists using foreign companies as alternative platforms.

CAVUTO: Do you ask or do you order?

BUSH: Well, if the law would change, yeah. But I think there has to be recognition that if we — if we are too punitive, then you’ll go to other — other technology companies outside the United States. And what we want to do is to control this.

We also want to dominate this from a commercial side. So there’s a lot of balanced interests. But the president leads in this regard. That’s what we need. We need leadership, someone who has a backbone and sticks with things, rather than just talks about them as though anything matters when you’re talking about amendments that don’t even actually are part of a bill that ever passed.

CAVUTO: Governor, thank you.

The bottom line seems to be that this debate isn’t going anywhere, a compromise may not be possible by design, and we’ll continue to see this national conversation continue just as it has for months now. My colleague Ben Lovejoy put his stake in the ground a couple of months ago on the whole debate.

Original image source via CNN


Filed under: iOS Devices, Tech Industry Tagged: Apple, Attorney General, Encryption, FBI, governement, iPhone, Jeb Bush, National Security, President Obama, privacy, Tim Cook, US, White House

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Zac Hall

January 15th

Apple

Mac

Apple bringing its Maps vehicles to France, Sweden & more US/UK cities

Apple-Maps-van-01

Apple has announced an expansion of its Apple Maps vehicle program, a fleet of vans equipped with advanced sensors collecting data for an improved Maps experience. Among the new locations, Apple will be bringing the vehicles to France and Sweden for the first time, while it also plans to survey a long list of new cities in the US and UK where it’s already started surveying.

We first reported on the project back in May, noting that Apple was gathering data to reduce its reliance on third-parties, including getting Google Street View-type images of storefronts and other 3D imagery.

For France, Apple lists the following areas already scheduled for surveying: Hauts-de-Seine, Paris (1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 19th, 20th), Seine-Saint-Denis, Val-de-Marne.

For Sweden, the areas the company plans to visit include: Malmö in Skåne County, and Stockholm (Bromma, Enskede-Årsta-Vantör, Farsta, Hägersten-Liljeholmen, Hässelby-Vällingby, Kungsholmen, Norrmalm, Rinkeby-Kista, Skarpnäck, Skärholmen, Spånga-Tensta, Södermalm, Älvsjö, Östermalm).

Apple has also added a number of new areas in the UK and US that it plans to survey from August 17th to August 30th next month. The full list is on its website here along with other dates scheduled for data collection in various locations.


Filed under: AAPL Company, Apps Tagged: Apple Maps, expansion, France, iOS, iPad, iPhone, mapping, sensors, Sweden, UK, US, vans, vehicles

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Jordan Kahn

July 27th

Apple

Mac

Declassified: The Government’s Secret Plan For a Military Moon Base

Declassified: The Government's Secret Plan For a Military Moon Base

More than 50 years ago, before man had ever stepped foot on the moon, the U.S. government hatched a plan whose ambitions were exceeded only by its total unfeasibility: A secret, self-sustaining, Soviet-shaming military moon base.

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Ashley Feinberg

July 25th

Uncategorized

Google Wallet iOS app adds gift cards, invoicing, ability to send money from debit cards for free

 

Google-Wallet-gift-cards

Google today announced new features for its Google Wallet app for both iOS and Android that makes it easier to manage gift cards and request and send from debit cards.

Like Google Wallet already allowed for loyalty cards, the app now lets users store, redeem, and check gift card balance:

You can already store your loyalty cards and offers in Google Wallet, and now you can easily keep your gift cards in Wallet too. Add your cards to Wallet just by snapping a picture of them or typing in the card info. Then, when you want to use the gift card at the store, just show your phone to the cashier at checkout.

The ability to check gift card balance is for now restricted to certain partners including: AMC, BestBuy, Nike, Sephora, ToysRUs, WholeFoods, and more. Some partners will also be offering a “Save to Google” button for gift cards that are distributed digitally, allowing users to instantly add the card in one click.

Google-Wallet-debit-send-money-

As for the new requesting and sending money features, both the Google Wallet apps and Gmail will now be able to send money from debit cards for free. The feature, first launched last year, allows users to send money to anyone 18 or older in the US using just an email address and previously charged 2.9% fee per transaction (minimum $0.30) for both credit and debit cards. That fee has now been removed for debit cards. Users can also now request money from friends with an invoicing feature, as pictured above. 

Lastly, the Google Wallet apps for Android and iOS now offer a Spanish language setting.

The new versions of the apps are rolling out on the Google Play Store and the App Store this week in the US.


Filed under: Apps Tagged: Android, BestBuy, Debit card, gift cards, Google Wallet, iOS, Nike, Save to Google, send money, US

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Jordan Kahn

July 16th

Apple

Mac

A Glimpse Of How We’ll Use Our Land In 2051

A Glimpse Of How We’ll Use Our Land In 2051

It's the year 2051. Welcome to a view of the American landscape. Urban areas have swollen with people. Range and pasturelands have shrunk. There's a bit more forest than there was back in 2014, a result of economic incentives driving more timber production. These are a few of the predictions of a new study on how people will use privately held U.S. lands in coming decades.

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Michael Keller

May 11th

Uncategorized

More than half of the entire US population lives here

More than half of the entire US population lives here

Reddit user metricmapsore made this great visualization showing how our country is divided and found that more than half of the entire US population—54% that is—live on the edges of the map. It makes sense, that's where the biggest cities are and thus, that's where the people are. Why would anyone live anywhere else!

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Casey Chan on Sploid, shared by Casey Chan to Gizmodo

May 10th

Uncategorized

Clearer photo of mysterious unidentified flying object taken in Kansas

Clearer photo of mysterious unidentified flying object taken in Kansas

A clearer photo of the mysterious unidentified flying object in Texas has surfaced. The image—enhanced above—clearly shows a boomerang-shaped blended wing object with two exhaust nozzles that seems clearly different from a B-2 bomber. It was "completely silent" and did "severe 180 degree turns in the sky in the shape of an S."

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Jesus Diaz on Sploid, shared by Jesus Diaz to Gizmodo

April 18th

Uncategorized

Amazon says it has now passed Apple and Hulu in streaming video usage

amazon_rank_slide

Amazon has officially passed Hulu and Apple in streaming video usage in the US, according to a press release it sent out today citing recent research from Qwilt. Amazon also announced that video streams from its Prime Instant Video service have tripled since this time last year.

Qwlit’s report shows Amazon experience a 94% traffic volume increase of users consuming video since last year and that includes streams from the service to just US broadband subscribers. The report doesn’t specify, however, what video content exactly is being tracked from Apple. Amazon also experienced growth of almost 300% in certain markets. In March of this year, only Netflix and YouTube were able to capture more online video traffic in the US:

Today, only Netflix and YouTube produce more total online video traffic in the US. Amazon”s traffic volumes, as measured by Qwilt in March of 2014, increased by 94% over the previous 12 months. In some US operator networks, between March 2013 and March 2014, Amazon”s streaming video traffic increase was nearly 300%.

Amazon’s press release today follows the announcement of its new Fire TV set top box that will be a direct competitor to Apple TV, Chromecast, and similar streaming hardware. The $99 hardware– another sign its really getting serious about video streaming services– provides access to Amazon’s Instant Video streaming services in addition to popular services like Hulu and Netflix, as well as Android games and an optional game controller.


Filed under: AAPL Company Tagged: Amazon, Apple, broadband, Hulu, Netflix, Network, streaming, US, usage, video

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Jordan Kahn

April 8th

Apple

Mac

The U.S. Built a Bizarre “Twitter for Cuba” To Help Undermine Castro

The U.S. Built a Bizarre "Twitter for Cuba" To Help Undermine Castro

In one of the oddest reports of spy games we've heard in years—and that's saying something—the AP has uncovered a United States plot to create a "Cuban Twitter" that would lure in users with soccer scores and music news before evolving its message into anti-Castro rhetoric. If any part of that made you say what, don't worry, that's a perfectly natural response.

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Brian Barrett

April 3rd

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