Apple Pay: frictionless

Finally got to try Apple Pay and it’s the most frictionless payment I have ever made. It happened almost at the speed of thought.

  • Sec 1: oh look, I can pay with Apple Pay
  • Sec 2: double tap on home button (fingerprint read simultaneously)
  • Sec 2: done

   
 The fact that this was also the most secure payment I have ever made at a terminal is just icing on the cake. My credit card is hard-bound to my physical phone (my CC number is not associated with anything in the “cloud”). A unique one-time use string gets generated and transmitted each time I initiate a payment. Even if Whole Foods gets hacked, hackers won’t find any CC numbers, or usable auth codes in their database.

Apple Watch & Boarding Passes

So I checked in to my Lufthansa flight last night on my iPhone which ended with the boarding passes being added to my Wallet on my phone. This morning, when I arrived at the airport and swiped up on my Apple Watch screen, the boarding pass was already there!.When I swiped into it I could also have the QR code show up. I didn’t do anything to make it happen. The Apple Watch is just an extension of my phone, which is an extension of my life. Due things like these, I can just leave my phone in my bag and not have to take it out as often as I did before I got my Apple Watch.

  

 I get asked a lot, is an Apple Watch worth it? It all depends on your use case and how much value you put on what it enables. In 2007 when the iPhone was launched, people asked the same question. 8 yrs later today, a lot of people have smartphones that never thought they ever would. In the same way, eventually humans do pay for increasing their capabilities and capacity (ever buy paper, or a notebook to write on?), and they pay for things that reduce friction in their lives (when was the last time you milked a cow?), and they pay for improving the quality of their lives (are shoes worth it?).

The Apple Watch is nice hardware, feels great, has a beautiful display, tracks my steps, my heart rate, my sleep, and it feels way more naturally integrated into my life than holding a phone – the trade-off being the depth of interaction.  

Using Apple Find My Friends for continuous location tracking

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At Fuse we like trying out new things and we always have very willing folks to sign up with. We started continuously monitoring each others locations 24×7 yesterday. As I came into work today it was great to see everyone converging into our workplace.

I have used other services like Glympse and many others which let me do this too but I never reached this type of critical mass so quickly so haven’t seen it across 10 people in real-time.

The cool thing is that this is integrated with Siri so I can just pick my phone and ask the question “Where is Flynn right now?” and the phone tries to track him down as best as it can and shows it to me:

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In an ideal world this is awesome. But it’s a little involved to get off the grid when you want to and at least at this point it’s harder to remember that others could be seeing you.

Possible ways to make this better would be:
1. Notify me when a friend looks me up and views my current location – adds some level of symmetry.
2. Something at the level of a hardware button to easily turn off my location sharing
3. Get rid of the stitched leather 🙂

Other than that I think it’s designed pretty well and it’s clear they fought off many complicated considerations to come up with a solution that’s nuanced enough for something as sensitive as location sharing and still retains simplicity.