Saturday, July 13, 2024

Apple exits buy-now-pay-later business as the sector draws regulatory scrutiny

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Apple Inc. is shutting down its Pay Later program, which let customers make purchases on an installment plan, marking a retreat from efforts to offer more financial services in-house. 

The company said Monday that it’s no longer offering loans for Apple Pay Later, which allowed users to pay off purchases of as much as $1,000 over four installments. The iPhone maker took the step after announcing that third-party services—such as ones from Affirm Holdings Inc. and Citigroup Inc.—would be integrated into its upcoming iOS 18 software. 

“Starting later this year, users across the globe will be able to access installment loans offered through credit and debit cards, as well as lenders, when checking out with Apple Pay,” a spokesperson said in a statement. “With the introduction of this new global installment loan offering, we will no longer offer Apple Pay Later in the US.”

Apple launched its Pay Later program in the U.S. last year using an in-house platform. For the first time, Apple itself issued the loans to customers via a new subsidiary. But it still relied on Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and MasterCard Inc. to help handle the process.

The new services in iOS 18 will be available globally through the company’s Apple Pay platform. And users with open loans will continue to be able to manage them within the Wallet app, Apple said.

“Our focus continues to be on providing our users with access to easy, secure and private payment options with Apple Pay, and this solution will enable us to bring flexible payments to more users, in more places across the globe, in collaboration with Apple Pay enabled banks and lenders,” the company said.

The news was previously reported by 9to5Mac.

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