Apple offers installment payments to customers in China

Apple is trying to make it easier for customers in China to pay for its products.

The company has posted to its Chinese Web site a new installment plan, allowing customers who pay 300 yuan (about $48) or more for an Apple product to pay in installments. From now until January 23, Apple is offering interest-free payments for up to 12 months. If customers choose 18- or 24-month installments, interest will be assessed at 6.5 percent and 8.5 percent, respectively.

When customers check out on Apple's online store, they'll be given the option to pay in … Read more

PayPal's in-store payment partners grow to 23 retailers

Increasingly bringing its service offline, PayPal announced today that it has nearly doubled its brick-and-mortar store lineup to 23 retailers that now accept its payment service.

"Delivering valuable digital and mobile payments is alive and thriving, and consumers all over the U.S. will now start seeing PayPal more where they shop every day, including the grocery store and at the gas pump," PayPal's vice president of retail services Don Kingsborough said in a statement. "No bells, whistles or buzzes -- just technology that works and gets the most from your money."

Throughout the U.… Read more

Google Wallet chief: Why we're a long way from 'blink to pay'

According to industry sources, 2013 is the year for mobile payments to go mainstream. Of course, so were 2012, and 2011 before it. Mobile payments are the 3D TVs of the finance world -- always on the cusp of popularity, never quite getting there.

But payments made using information stored in smartphones and transmitted through the Internet are inevitable, according to a panel of payment executives at CES 2013 today. Only recently have large numbers of consumers begun buying smartphones with mobile wallet software preinstalled and ready to use, said Peter Hazlehurst, who heads up Google Wallet.

"This is … Read more

Starbucks starts selling Square Readers for $10 in-store

Square has just extended its partnership with Starbucks a bit further.

The companies announced today that Starbucks customers can now buy Square's Mobile Card Readers in-store at 7,000 locations nationwide. Starbucks is selling the Reader for $10 but will give customers back $10 if they're new merchants or individuals who sign up for Square's service.

Starbucks is a major investor in Square, dropping $25 million into the mobile-payment startup last year. Since then, the companies have been working closely to expand Square's footprint across the U.S. In November, in fact, Starbucks announced that it … Read more

How to send a Square gift card

The ability send and process gift cards were recently added by Square as an additional service for its merchants. The process is simple, but requires you to download and install the Square Wallet app (iOS, Android) on your smartphone.

Once you have Square Wallet installed you'll need to set up an account, complete with your payment information. You can then find a local store listed in Square Wallet, such as a coffee shop or bookstore, open the respective card for that business, and then tap "Send Gift Card." Enter the recipient's information, select an amount and … Read more

Square COO predicts monster 2013, says Starbucks is just the beginning

After a monster 2012 in which Square, a leader in the mobile payments space, tripled its user base, added Starbucks as a major partner, and hit more than $10 billion in annualized transactions, its COO is predicting that 2013 looks even better.

A year ago, the San Francisco-based startup, which was founded by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, announced that it had reached a million users and that 75,000 merchants were accepting payments through Square. Now, COO Keith Rabois told CNET in an interview, the company has passed 3 million users and 250,000 merchants taking Square Wallet.

Without question, … Read more

Square to ink payment-processing deal with Burberry -- report

Square has lined up its first luxury-brand partner, a new report claims.

Square and the Burberry clothing chain are testing out a deal to see how the payment processing might work in its stores, The Next Web reported today, citing people who claim to have knowledge of the deal. The announcement could be made soon.

Burberry CTO John Douglas already spilled the beans, albeit unofficially. On Twitter last week, Douglas noted that Square was "live in our Burberry Brit store in San Francisco."

Square has been growing by leaps and bounds. The company, which offers a free accessory … Read more

Mozilla to developers: Come build apps for Firefox OS!

SAN FRANCISCO -- Microsoft's not the only big tech player taking a gamble on a new direction. Mozilla made an aggressive argument for Firefox OS to Web and app developers Monday night at its confusingly named Mobile Monday Mixer -- confusing because the company held the event last night at its San Francisco office.

As the lights from the Bay Bridge blinked in the background, Jay Sullivan, Mozilla's vice president of products, laid out why developers should care about Firefox OS. "If you're looking to build and develop mobile software without the 30 percent toll [Apple … Read more

Square hits $10 billion in annual payments processed

Mobile-payments startup Square said today that it is now processing $10 billion in transactions a year.

That's a major milestone for a company that announced just seven months ago that it had hit $5 billion in annualized transactions, and two months ago that it had passed the $8 billion mark. In October, 2011, the number was $2 billion.

Founded by Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey, San Francisco-based Square has become a leader in the mobile-payments space, growing to the point that last week, Starbucks integrated its service into the coffee giant's 7,000 U.S. stores.

In a tweetRead more

Visa officially launches its digital wallet

Visa has finally brought its digital wallet out of beta.

The company announced its move today, saying that the official launch accompanies deals Visa has signed with over 50 financial institutions that will support the platform. The financial institutions, including America First Credit Union, Capitol Federal Savings Bank, and others, combine to service over 55 million people, according to Visa.

Visa has also signed up a host of online merchants, including 1-800-Flowers and Beach Camera, to support

Like other services, Visa's digital-wallet offering lets customers pay for products without pulling plastic out of … Read more