The 24 Hour Mobile Wallet Challenge

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Is the mobile wallet really a replacement for cash or card? Members of our team decided to take the challenge: 24 hours without our wallets! Here’s what we found:

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Morning Routine:

Danielle: At 6:45am, I woke up and headed to my flywheel class I booked on my phone through Classpass. I added more credits to my app with Apple Pay on the go.

Rob: Around 8:47am, I was standing on the crowded train platform waiting for the train when I realized at about I hadn’t purchased my ticket yet. With the train headlights in the distance approaching the station I opened my commuter rail app, selected my ticket type, and completed the purchase with the integrated Apple Pay option. Train arrived, digital ticket shown, and off the city.

That first Cup O’ Joe:

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Ariana: My favorite cafe in Queens— Ateaz Organic Coffee & Tea—accepts mobile wallet payments. While standing in line, I was SO relieved to not have to dig through my bag to find my wallet. My phone was already in hand, and one quick tap was all it took to pay for my morning latte. When you’re running to class or work, those extra few minutes are a lifesaver.

Rob: America may run on Dunkin’, but it runs faster with Apple Pay! When it was my turn to place my Dunkin’ order, I felt the hustle and pressure of the 50 people in line behind me. I presented my phone with Apple Pay: no receipt, no signature, no wait, to some it may have looked like I just stole my order! I’m pretty sure the people in line behind me were as pleased with the transaction as I was.

Danielle: It was extra sunny out, so it called for a special morning cappuccino. I stopped at my favorite artisan, fair-trade coffee shop, Terremoto Coffee, on my block. I paid with Apple Pay and got a personalized loyalty star text through Square. After such a seamless transaction, I’m feeling energized to have a great day!

Meals During the Day:

Danielle: During lunch, I headed to Citarella Market  for lunch. I paid with Apple Pay. It was quick and easy—I was back at my desk within 20 minutes!

Erin: My day using mobile wallet started at McDonald's buying a breakfast sandwich. In the afternoon, I used Google Pay to purchase a soda from a vending machine and ordered lunch using DoorDash, paying for my DoorDash meal with my Google Pay.

Ariana: As a college student, I was surprised to find how many on-campus dining options could be paid for with my mobile wallet. An easy tap at the NFC reader was all it took to pay for my lunch. I noticed students in front of me in line using their mobile wallets too. Another place I found that my mobile wallet worked: vending machines. SO convenient for someone who doesn’t want to carry around quarters!

Errands & Activities:

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Rob: One place you want to leave as quickly as possible: the back seat of a NYC cab. After a cab ride to a meeting in midtown, running a few minutes late of course, the LAST thing I wanted to do was spend time exchanging cash and making change, tip, etc. Instead, I selected a tip amount on the terminal in the back of cab, held up my phone for Apple Pay, heard the “ding” confirmation and I was onto my meeting.

Erin: After work, I stopped by Walgreens to pick up some milk and other items and used my mobile wallet at the register. I was even able to access my Balance Rewards account using Google Pay SmartTap to gain my rewards points from my purchase. It was super convenient, and I didn’t have to worry about my juggling my physical wallet, especially when carrying those grocery bags.

Ariana: After a busy midterm season at school, I decided to treat myself by stopping at my favorite makeup store: Sephora! I scanned my loyalty Beauty Insider card straight from my Apple Wallet and was able to use Apple Pay to make my purchase.

So how did this challenge go?

Our team found that the 24 Hour Mobile Wallet Challenge was totally doable! With everything else already on our phones, it’s no surprise that mobile wallets are emerging as the go-to, quick and easy way to pay. What’s more—they can do everything a physical wallet does, like house loyalty cards or train tickets. After 24 hours using our mobile wallets, like Apple Pay and Google Pay, our physical wallets were hardly missed!

Now it’s your turn. Are you up for the challenge?

Ariana Alessandri