Apple enthusiasts rejoice: the tech giant recently announced that they would be offering a “buy now, pay later” (BNPL) service along with iOS 6, the newest iteration of their proprietary operating system.
The announcement was made at the company’s annual Worldwide Developers’ Conference (WWDC) which is currently online until Friday, June 10, 2022.
The new feature, Apple Pay Later, will enable users to pay for their purchases in four installments distributed over six weeks. In addition, apple Pay Later is interest-free and will not entail any additional fees.
To date, however, Apple Pay Later will only be rolled out to customers in the United States. The company has not made any statements regarding the payment system’s rollout to other countries.
Along with the rest of the iOS 16 suite of services, Apple Pay Later is due to launch in the fall of this year.
So what’s new in iOS 16?
Functionality is the hallmark of the newest version of the Apple operating system.
The lock screen, for example, will enable users to do more than just replace the background image. Under the new system, users can change how the screen clock locks and select a lock screen that does different functions depending on what they need, including activity monitors for avid fitness enthusiasts.
Apple users can also edit and unsend messages sent via Apple’s iMessage app. But users and cybersecurity experts are looking forward to an entirely new feature called Safety Check.
The company specifically created Safety Check to protect users trapped in abusive relationships or suffering from manipulation or coercion by predatory individuals. Along with Apple’s proprietary Find My Phone tracker application, the new app includes an emergency reset function that enables people to sign out of iCloud on all devices and allows just one device to send or receive messages.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a non-profit digital rights group based in San Francisco, CA, hailed this new development as one that will help numerous people. Their director of cybersecurity went so far as to say that it is a godsend for survivors of domestic abuse or manipulation by their partners.
Why Does BNPL Matter?
But going back to adding a BNPL payment feature, economists wonder if it’s something that people have begun to rely on too much.
In the United Kingdom, for example, nearly 15 million adults use BNPL services, with one in every twelve using such services to cover the cost of essential commodities like food and medicine.
Such services remain unregulated in many parts of the world. There has been talk that governments may soon impose restrictions on who may avail of BNPL payment options.