Apple Pay expands to Bay Area supermarkets

Apple Pay is continuing its steady march to retail stores near you.

Modesto-based Save Mart Supermarkets — which operates Save Mart, S-Mart Foods, Lucky, Maxx Value Foods and FoodMaxx — announced on Thursday that customers can now check out using Apple Pay at its 217 location in Northern California and Northern Nevada.  Nicole Piccinini Pesco, co-president and chief strategy and branding officer at Save Mart Supermarkets, cited security and convenience as the chief  reasons for adopting Apple Pay, a mobile payments system that lets people with the iPhone 6 or 6 Plus buy items in stores by waving their phones at the register.

“We are working diligently to transform the shopping experience for our customers and this cutting-edge technology will help to speed them through checkout,” she said in a statement. “Accepting Apple Pay provides shoppers a secure and private way to pay for their groceries and we’ve added support for this new mobile payment method solely for their benefit and convenience.”

Analysts say grocery stores, a staple of most shoppers’ weeks, are precisely where Apple needs to be if its mobile payments system is to transform from a novelty to a reflex at checkout for consumers. Other grocery stores that back Apple Pay include Albertsons, Bi-Lo, Jewel Osco, Wegmans, Winn-Dixie and Whole Foods. Whole Foods told the Mercury News in November that it was doing about $4 million per week in Apple Pay transactions.

Meanwhile, in another high note for the Apple Pay progress report, Bank of America shared that almost 800,000 customers have signed up for the mobile payments service, enlisting about 1.1 million cards.



Above: Apple Pay is steadily expanding to more stores (Bryan Thomas/Getty Images).






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