The company has been meeting with potential applicants for two new positions at Apple focused exclusively on building a business around the hundreds of millions of credit cards it already has on file. Apple is seeking to fill head of product and head of business development positions, one of these people said.
Apple's e-commerce head, Jennifer Bailey, is the one leading the initiative and meeting with candidates. “Their ambitions are very, very serious,” said a source.
Apple has nearly 600 million iTunes accounts, a majority of which are tied to a credit card account. This has long led to speculation that Apple will eventually launch a mobile payments service that would allow customers to pay for goods and services using their device.
PayPal has been looking to partner with Apple on the effort and the two companies have reportedly been engaged in talks as recently as last month. PayPal spokesman Anuj Nayar and Apple spokeswoman Trudy Muller declined to comment.
Late last year, a job posting revealed that Apple was seeking a Payments Software Engineer to help build a 'next generation payment platform'. The posting followed reports that it was planning to equip its retail stores with iBeacons to offer an improved customer experience. Could a new payment platform that utilizes iBeacons for Apple Retail be launching point for a payment processing system that makes it way to other retailers?