Morning Brief 3.17.20: Apple iOS update could expand Alipay wallet support

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The information you need to start your day, from PaymentsSource and around the web:

Alipay and Apple

An Apple update could link Apple Wallet to Alipay, providing a boost in digital payment support for iPhone owners in China.

Apple's iOS 13.4 update may come out this week, reports CultofMac, which attributes its reporting to leaked Alipay marketing materials.

Apple has an existing partnership with Alipay to finance iPhone purchases, a move designed to boost flagging iPhone sales in China, a slump made worse by the coronavirus.

Coin card

Android has added the Coinbase Card to Google Pay wallets, enabling mobile payments directly from cryptocurrency balances.

Coinbase's card is a Visa debit card, and the Google Pay feature will be available mostly in European markets.

Coinbase's Visa card supports bitcoin, ethereum and litecoin for Visa's merchant network.

Virus response

Safaricom is waiving fees for mobile money service MPesa for the next 90 days in an attempt to ease money movement during the coronavirus outbreak.

The discount applies to transactions under about $10, and is part of a coordinated effort between MPesa and Kenya's central bank.

Other money transfer services such as Skrill have also suspended fees in response to the crisis.

Standard delay

Swift is delaying a migration date for cross-border payments standards by more than a year to accommodate complex upgrades.

ISO 20022 is designed to improve data exchanges for digital transactions and faster payments, providing a consistent experience in different markets. The migration was set for November 2021 but will be pushed to the end of 2022, reports Finextra.

The delay was not directly linked to the coronavirus, and the ISO 20022 migration has been delayed before

From the Web

Goldman Sachs Waives March Apple Card Payments And Interest For Those Affected By COVID-19 (Coronavirus)
FORBES | Mon March 16, 2020
In an email, customers in need of financial assistance were offered by Apple and Goldman Sachs to enroll in the card’s “Customer Assistance Program,” which will allow them to skip March payments without incurring interest charges. The move to offer relief to consumers affected by the pandemic is an extension of how numerous industries are reacting to the rapidly evolving situation.

Will coronavirus make mobile payment systems like Apple Pay, Google Pay mainstream?
USA TODAY | Mon March 16, 2020
Jordan McKee, an analyst with 451 Research, says it's still really "early days" for mobile pay, with it accounting for just 2% of U.S. in-store sales in 2019. But for the general public, there's a big education curve for the industry.

Travelex owner at risk as £81m of undisclosed cheques emerge
THE GUARDIAN | Mon March 16, 2020
The embattled Travelex owner Finablr is at risk of collapse after the company revealed it had issued $100m (£81m) worth of undisclosed cheques and announced a larger-than-expected financial blow from the coronavirus outbreak. Finablr said the board had only recently been informed about the payments, which are the subject of an independent investigation.

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