Apple revealed a $329 iPad today. The company looks to boost sales of the tablet with the move. The iPad will have a 9.7-inch screen, A9 processing chip and about 10 hours of battery life. It will be available in three days.

In addition, the tech giant plans to open two new R & D centers in Shanghai and Suzhou. The company has two centers in progress already in Beijing and Shenzhen. The total cost is a half billion dollars.

Apple Pay went live in many Irish stores recently. Boon, KBC, and Ulster Bank support the payment system. Mastercard and Visa users can use Apple Pay. The service operates in 14 countries across the world. The service’s rollout has not been smooth. The company’s war with Australian banks reached a fever pitch. The banks want to bargain collectively the company over the payment option. Apple Pay is the tech company’s mobile payment system.

The banks plan is to focus on gaining access to Apple’s contactless payment function. Therefore, the firms will not focus on removing the service fees. Banks representing two-thirds of the Australian credit card market have not allowed their own cards to be used with the payment system. Australian law allows the formation of bargaining cartels.

Firms just need to get approval from government officials. A cartel would help strengthen the banks’ hand in talks with the tech giant. Apple’s service allows users to register credit cards on iPhones.

The banks produced a statement before the regulator’s final decision on the case. The bank shrunk the app to focus on contactless payments. The firms halved the collective bargaining agreement to a year and a half. The banks want consumers to have the choice of multiple wallets. Last month, Apple said there was no public benefit to giving banks its contactless payment system. Doing so would grant the banks a “free-ride” on Apple’s tech. The tech giant refused to allow that to happen.

Meanwhile, Target denied reports saying the retail store plans to add Apple Pay to its payment options. “We have no plans or work underway currently to make Apple Pay available in our stores,” said Target in the statement about the posting.

“We continue to offer Apple Pay for online purchases in the Target app. And while we are exploring mobile wallet opportunities for our stores, we have no updates on our plans to share at this time.” Target allows online customers to use Apple Pay. But no one knows if the retailer will permit the payment option in its physical stores.

Apple Pay Comes To Target

Many Target stores have the capability to use the tech. The option remains shut down now. The company expressed an interest in the tech in the past. It even upgraded its payment terminals with chip card support. This was done in Oct. 2015. Still the company plans to use its own mobile payment option by the end of this year.

This explains why the company delayed Apple Pay. Including Apple Pay as a payment option might lend it a much needed edge against Walmart. Walmart prefers to use Walmart Pay, its own payment system.

Source: USA Today

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