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We interrupt your regular Apple news to bring you a report from the Journals of Improbability!

Writing on, New York Times freelancer Kim Moy and Columbia University associate Matthew Webber have come up with an idea for mobile payments that’s so crazy it just might work!

“Apple Should License Samsung Pay.” (Tip o’ the antlers to Shawn King.)

Sorry, did the Macalope say “just might work”? He meant “will never happen in a gazillion years”. He regrets the error.

The Macalope’s not sure if this is a case of too much book learnin’ overshadowing how the real world works or if it’s a result of the new axiom for academics that says “publish something totes cray-cray or perish”.

When Apple Pay was released, it came with the fanfare that mobile payments had finally gone mainstream. However, a year and a half later, it's impossible to get a reliable experience using ApplePay [sic].

Hmm. Really? I mean, the Macalope knows you bolded that part and everything, but he’s pretty sure he’s had a very reliable experience using Apple Pay.

As an experiment, we tracked our payment options over a few days with the iPhone…

And what did they find? Was Apple Pay a total fail sandwich when they tried to use it? No, actually. Instead what they found was that mobile payment of any kind wasn’t available at the retail establishments they went to. So, when they say “ApplePay”, the missing space must mean it’s shorthand for any mobile payment at all.

Samsung Pay still works without contact almost everywhere because it features a system that works with the old swipe-style card readers by emitting a magnetic field the readers pick up. It’s a neat technology, but it’s like saying a particular edition of Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing is “typewriter-compatible”. Magnetic swipe readers are not the future. It’s also not clear how secure Samsung’s technology is.

It is in Apple AND Samsung’s best interest to make mobile payments work universally for everyone.

How is it in Samsung’s interest? Samsung’s far more likely to want to use “Works everywhere, unlike those other guys, yes, we’re talking about Apple, that’s all we do, really.” as a marketing tool than broadly promote contactless payment.

Regardless of whether or not Samsung would license this technology, there’s no way Apple’s going to ask to given their history. Apple considers Samsung a bunch of thieves and looking at their latest phones it’s hard not to agree.

More realistically, it’s in Apple’s interest to promote the adoption of mobile payment readers so Apple Pay can be used everywhere. That’s what the Macalope thinks they’ll do.

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