Apple says Apple Pay response ‘overwhelmingly positive,’ still working to add new merchants

MasterCard (Apple Pay ads 001)

Apple has commented on the recent chatter regarding Rite Aid and CVS disabling Apple Pay over the weekend, telling BusinessInsider that it’s working to bring on as many merchant partners as it can for its newly launched mobile payment service.

Late last week, reports began popping up that Rite Aid stores were disabling support for Apple Pay and other NFC-based payment services, and over the weekend, CVS followed suit. The two retailers confirmed the moves today via press statements.

“At this time, CVS/pharmacy cannot accept Apple Pay or other mobile payments that use NFC technology. We are in the process of evaluating mobile payment options for our customers.”

And here is the full statement from Apple:

“The feedback we are getting from customers and retailers about Apple Pay is overwhelmingly positive and enthusiastic. We are working to get as many merchants as possible to support this convenient, secure and private payment option for consumers. Many retailers have already seen the benefits and are delighting their customers at over 220,000 locations.”

Despite its optimism, Apple probably won’t be landing Rite Aid or CVS anytime soon. The companies, along with Best Buy and Walmart, are members of Merchant Customer Exchange (or MCX),  a team of retailers designing their own payments system.

RIteAid internal memo Apple Pay

MCX is testing this new system, dubbed CurrentC, in Minnesota right now, and initial feedback hasn’t been good. The process is extremely convoluted, and requires QR code scanning, both license and social security numbers, and bank account access.

But despite these holdouts, several major retailers support Apple Pay, including Nike, Disney, Whole Foods and Macy’s. It also works in stores that have existing NFC mobile payment terminals, making the service available in over 200,000 locations.

To learn more about Apple Pay, click here.