Android users want to pay for things using NFC with Google Wallet, and iOS users want to pay for things using NFC with Apple Pay. And one thing is standing in their way: CurrentC. But the most passionate users of both platforms aren’t going to let their mobile payment system of choice go down without a fight.
CurrentC is essentially a mobile payment system centered around using QR codes and the CurrentC app on your smartphone instead of NFC, backed by a large number of huge, important retailers. After Apple Pay’s introduction, news spread like wildfire that any retailer who supported CurrentC would not allow for NFC payments to be made at its establishment, as part of the agreement to use CurrentC. Whether or not CurrentC will be successful remains to be seen, but offers like 10 percent off your entire purchase for using CurrentC put the system in a good position to make a heavy dent in the industry.
Android and iOS users are miffed about the whole situation mainly because, as stated above, in order for a merchant to support CurrentC they have to kill support for Apple Pay or Google Wallet. And that’s just the beginning. Try a simple Google search for “CurrentC” and see what kind of results pop up. Right now, the big news is that CurrentC has been hacked. You’ll also find other articles about questionable data acquisition and terrible usability. So Android and iOS users are joining forces to fight against CurrentC in any way they can.
Using Reddit as a major meeting ground, supporters of NFC-based mobile payments are collecting boycott lists of companies that support CurrentC, making websites with easy to access information on the payment system, bombarding app store listings with terrible reviews of the CurrentC app and more. The CurrentC app currently sits in the iOS App Store and Google Play with one star, and coverage on the efforts are starting to pick up.
Of course the best way to show who you support is to vote with your wallet. Unfortunately for NFC supports, they may just be the vocal minority in this regard. CurrentC has some impressive backers including Best Buy, Walmart and Target — all retailers who will undoubtedly see an incredible volume of customers this holiday season no matter what mobile payment system they back. But the war has only just begun. And when Apple and Google combine, they can make for one serious adversary.
We’ll be keeping a close eye on CurrentC, and the future of NFC payments, as they will both surely be making plenty of headlines for the next couple of months to come.