Target Plans to Offer Apple Pay After Chip-and-PIN Card Upgrade

targetTarget CEO Brian Cornell spoke at Re/code's Code Conference in Palos Verdes, California today, where he confirmed that the company plans to offer in-store support for Apple Pay in the future. According to Cornell, while he'd love to have Apple Pay available "right now," support will not be coming until Target upgrades its system to support integrated circuit credit cards to comply with new standards.

Integrated circuit cards (or chip-and-PIN cards) replace the magnetic stripe on a credit card or debit card with an embedded microchip. The microchip communicates with a supported point-of-sale system to authenticate transactions. Chip-and-PIN cards are already used in many countries around the world because they're believed to be more secure than traditional credit cards. In the United States, retailers are being encouraged to adopt point-of-sale systems that support chip cards by the end of 2015.

Target is especially eager to move to a more secure transaction system following a major data breach in late 2013 that saw hackers obtaining payment information for approximately 40 million of its customers. The move is a major transition for Target, and Cornell says he doesn't want to "distract the team" with work on other payment systems.

"Our focus is on getting chip-and-PIN in place in time for the holidays," Cornell said at the second annual Code Conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. "Down the line we want to accept all the types of payments that our guests want. But this decision was all about focus. ... It is a major undertaking to convert to chip-and-PIN, and I decided that we can't distract the team."

Cornell says he has met with Apple CEO Tim Cook, and once the chip-and-PIN transition is completed, Target will be "open-minded" about supporting additional payment systems like Apple Pay. Target already supports Apple Pay in its iOS app.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tag: Target

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Top Rated Comments

ButteryScrollin Avatar
118 months ago
My local Target has NFC readers that they've switched off, so saying they'd love to do it right now is ********.
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
flur Avatar
118 months ago
FWIW, it's not actually chip-and-PIN, it's just chip. The banks (unfortunately) get to decide if their cards will use PIN or signature with the chip, and most in the US have opted to keep us in the dark ages with signature.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iLoveMyApple Avatar
118 months ago
Now if we could just add our Target cards to Apple Pay. I want to save my 5%!
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dagamer34 Avatar
118 months ago
I wonder how long until Walmart gets the message. CurrentC is dead.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
CEmajr Avatar
118 months ago
Your move Wal-Mart

That will be the last major domino to fall in favor of :apple: Pay
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
bradl Avatar
118 months ago
Now if we could just add our Target cards to Apple Pay. I want to save my 5%!

REDcard with Apple Pay? That would be killer, especially with combining that with Cartwheel.

BL.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)