Apple Cash Beta Released

Apple Cash, the Cupertino, California-based iPhone maker’s peer-to-peer (P2P) payment service has launched in a beta form in the U.S.

According to a news report in Finextra, with the public beta launch, users in America can now send and receive P2P payments via Messages. The service is available on the iOs 11.2 beta 2 for U.S. customers. Users will be able to see the Apple Pay button in the app section of Messages.  

When users get paid, the money goes to a new Apple Pay Cash virtual card that is located in the Apple Wallet and can be used instantly. The company teamed up with Green Dot, the prepaid payment card company, for its Apple Pay Cash card.

When Apple first announced the upcoming service, the company said it would be available for U.S. customers only, but a news report from September implied it could be available for European customers as well. Recent reports in LetsGoDigital and other outlets have noted a trademark registration filed by Apple with the European Intellectual Property Office pertaining to Apple Pay Cash. The move likely signals Apple’s plans to expand Apple Pay Cash into Europe.

The filing also suggests consumers will need a photo ID to use Apple Pay Cash and that a software upgrade could be key to supporting the P2P Apple Pay Cash tool. Balances are stored within the Apple Pay Cash virtual card in the Apple Wallet app, and funds can be transferred to bank accounts or used via the virtual card.

While Apple has been in the digital payments market for a while now, it is adding more features and services to better compete in the growing P2P marketplace. U.S. consumers may not be avid users of mobile payments yet, but the payment method is growing in popularity outside the U.S.