- Business Insider/Hayley Peterson
- Department store chain JCPenney said in a statement that it will no longer support Apple Pay in its stores or mobile app.
- Many customers are now saying they will take their business elsewhere.
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JCPenney, the American department store chain that’s been around for 117 years, announced on Twitter that it will no longer support Apple Pay in its stores or online.
JCPenney acknowledged this move for the first time on Saturday, in a response to a customer on Twitter.
JCPenney made the decision to remove Apple Pay for our stores, we apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. We will definitely forward your feedback regarding this for review.
— Ask JCPenney (@askjcp) April 20, 2019
JCPenney has not provided a rationale for this decision. While the company did respond to the complaint on Twitter, it didn’t answer the customer’s actual question, which was “Why would you remove a very secure form of payment?”
As you could imagine, many customers have responded to JCPenney’s tweet expressing their displeasure.
Why? Why go backwards with technology?
— Bruticus (@TheCombaticons) April 20, 2019
Well, you just lost my business. As other said, data breaches are a big problem and you took away an important tool. I no longer can trust you with my data. #bye
— Bruticus (@TheCombaticons) April 21, 2019
…And I have made the decision to drop JCPenney from my shopping options. I apologize for any inconvenience.
— Greg (@DarkS2K) April 22, 2019
What a customer-unfriendly move…the other two anchor stores at my local mall take it…this signals that either you're inept with technology (data breach waiting to happen) or think some proprietary payment system will win out (it won't). Please pass the word along to reconsider.
— Eric (@ecschwarz) April 21, 2019
Well guess you lost customers! Guess we’ll be shopping at your competition
— Gabriel (@GabrielN2790) April 21, 2019
JCPenney has now fallen off my places to shop list
— CFL Mark (@CFL_Mark) April 22, 2019
I can't think of any logical reason why this decision was made. This is a huge step backwards in convenience and – more importantly – security. I will not be returning to your store until ApplePay support is reinstated.
Can you provide any information why this decision was made?
— Matthew Janssen (@mttjj) April 22, 2019
— Roy Marquez (@drroymarquez) April 22, 2019
Lost me as a customer as well.
— Victoria French (@victoriafrench) April 22, 2019
Welp, no more JCPenny for me. Pathetic.
Kohl’s offers Apple Pay. ????
— Caleb Basinger (Carnivore Channel) (@WholeFat) April 22, 2019
Apple created Apple Pay because plastic credit cards are vulnerable: A credit card can be stolen, and its important numbers and security codes are exposed by default. In contrast, Apple Pay works by touching your iPhone or Apple Watch to an NFC reader, and all of your personal identifying information remains private and secure. Apple doesn’t see your data, or share it with any third parties.
It’s unclear why a large company like JCPenney wants Apple Pay out of its retail experience, but we’ve seen this before. In 2014, shortly after the launch of Apple Pay, a handful of retailers decided to disallow Apple’s new mobile payments solution. Most of these companies debuted their own versions of Apple Pay: CVS made “CVS Pay,” Walmart made “Walmart Pay,” etc. A bunch of retailers even tried making one payments app to rule them all, called CurrentC. But many of these Apple Pay alternatives failed, or the companies eventually relented: for example, CVS is now accepting Apple Pay as of October 2018.
It’s possible JCPenney chose to remove Apple Pay because it wants more data about its customers, and Apple Pay data is not shared with third parties. That data can be extremely valuable to a chain like JCPenney, which has been struggling over the last decade: its number of stores, number of employees, and total revenue has steadily declined since 2007.