Apple Pay Unavailable At Home Depot As Retailer Upgrades Payment Terminals

Though Home Depot was never officially a partner with Apple’s Apple Pay mobile payment platform, which allows users to pay using credit card information stored their phones, the home improvement chain’s NFC-enabled checkout terminals worked with Apple Pay — until recently, that is. The retailer has begun the process of upgrading its in-store payment system, meaning that Apple Pay and other mobile payment platforms are now unavailable.

The news of Apple Pay’s absence was first noticed on reddit, where a Depot customer says they received an e-mail from Home Depot explaining that, “We currently do not accept Apple Pay in our local stores or online. We do have the option of using PayPal, in store or online. We may offer this feature in the future, but we currently do not have a time frame for this and if we are going to accept Apple Pay.”

This led to reports that Home Depot had dumped Apple Pay, but a rep for the company tells Consumerist that the current unavailability of Apple Pay is not a rejection of the platform or intended to push customers to PayPal.

The rep says that the NFC terminals, where you just wave your phone over a sensor to pay, are currently being upgraded. As a consequence, Apple Pay can’t be used. As to whether Apple Pay will work when the upgrades are complete, the rep tells Consumerist that the goal is to once again be able to accept Apple Pay transactions.

So why can people still use PayPal at Home Depot? Because the PayPal system doesn’t require an NFC-enabled terminal to work. The relevant info — phone # and PIN — can be entered via the retailer’s existing keypad used for credit and debit card purchases.

Some major retailers, including Walmart, Old Navy, Target, and 7-Eleven, have put off accepting Apple Pay because they are part of the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) coalition that is launching a competing platform called CurrentC. Best Buy is part of the MCX group of stores, but it recently decided to go ahead and start accepting Apple Pay ahead of the CurrentC debut.

Home Depot is not an MCX member retailer so it is free to offer any payment options it wishes.

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