Why CurrentC Is Like The Three Stooges

CurrentC And The Big Merchant Mess


Whoever said there’s no such thing as bad PR obviously wasn’t on the receiving end of the whooping that Rite Aid, CVS and CurrentC took last week over their decision to turn off support for Apple Pay in their stores. It’s unlikely that anyone thinks that the coverage last week had even the tiniest glimmer of goodness associated with it for any of those guys. Wait, I take that back. It did actually popularize the new CurrentC brand name. Everyone now knows that CurrentC is the name of the mobile payments scheme that won’t let consumers use Apple Pay at their favorite retailers. Unfortunately, for CurrentC, this is also the story that just won’t die, and in fact is now riding a fever pitch. If anything, the invite-only press briefing mid-week only made matters worse for them as contradictions and vagaries were in abundance. And, that only caused the media, now totally dialed into this story, to dig in even more. In particular, the claim made by CurrentC’s CEO that its merchants can do what they want, at the same time they are bound contractually and exclusively to CurrentC’s in-store mobile payments scheme was only slightly more hilarious than the tease that it might include general purpose payments cards in its wallet one day
Why The USA Today Says CurrentC Is Like The Three Stooges


USA Today has weighed in on the Apple Pay MCX CurrentC issue and is not pulling any punches. MCX seems to be what would have happened had “the Three Stooges had been given the assignment of introducing a new and safer way for consumers to pay at some of the biggest retail stores.” For those who don’t know, the Three Stooges was a popular American comedy team popular from the 1930s through the 1960s and were essentially known for broad slapstick, including poking people in the eyes and lots of violence. In short, the comparison is not likely to be seen by MCX backers as a compliment. (Then again, it could also offend some hardcore Three Stooges fan, so it works for many things.) The argument that USA Today made is that Apple Pay has been well received, is easier to use than CurrentC and is likely more secure. But the column is not solely arguing that CurrentC will not do well. It is arguing that it CurrentC will never even launch. “The odds that you’ll ever see CurrentC rolled out nationally are slim to none,” penned columnist Jefferson Graham. The fact that MCX has already been attacked by cyberthieves—who grabbed data from E-mail—gave the columnist his strongest talking point. “The new iPhones have built-in NFC (near field communication) chips that talk directly to pinpads near the cash register. Put your credit card information into the Passbook app on the iPhone for Apple Pay. Wave the phone at the pinpad, and secure the transaction with your fingerprint from Apple’s TouchID. CurrentC doesn’t work with credit cards. You heard me. This mobile payment system connects your checking account, and MCX says the advantage is it can add in coupons and loyalty information from the retailers,” the column said. “But those free airline miles that millions of consumers have come to love from their credit cards, which encourage them to make big purchases? Nah, not at our store. Instead of fingerprint technology, CurrentC uses the clunky QR code system, an idea whose time has yet to come. To register, you have to give MCX your social security number and banking information. And, the system has already been hacked. Would you trust these folks with your info?”
Comment: See CurrentC Is The Big Retailers’ Clunky Attempt To Kill Apple Pay And Credit Card Fees and Analysis: Retail's answer to Apple Pay probably doomed.I shopped for the CurrentC app for my IPhone and the reviews were terrible. 


Any anonymous comments with links will be rejected. Please do not comment off-topic