An exchange between a Walmart and Visa executive over Apple Pay

Jason Del Rey of Recode has posted an exchange between a Walmart and Visa executive that involves Apple Pay (try to ignore the sensational headline). Jason provides a helpful explanation of the exchange, as it involves some payment industry terminology and is a bit hard to follow.  

The Walmart executive, Mike Cook, asks why Apple Pay transactions qualify as "card present transactions" (lowest fees) when used in-store but are "card not present transactions" when used in-app (higher fees). It's actually a good question. But why should Mike care?


Well, Mike asks a follow up question: "When would you walk up to a point of sale and have a card not present transaction?" The Visa executive, Jim McCarthy, explains that would be the case for pretty much any mobile payment transaction other than Apple Pay. He explains that - unlike other mobile payment solutions - Apple Pay is fully EMV compliant (that's the payment standard rolling out in the U.S.). He goes on to give an example of one type of app that doesn't qualify - a mobile payment app that uses a QR code.


Mike Cook is said to be one of the masterminds behind MCX. Behold MCX's mobile payment app, CurrentC:


CurrentC screenshot