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Apple’s controversial ‘Pay Later’ innovation may not come until next year because of ‘technical difficulties’

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

A new Apple service showcased at WWDC 2022 will likely not come for another year because of “technical difficulties”, a new report has claimed.

Apple Pay Later, which would allow users to split an Apple Pay purchase into four smaller, interest-free payments, was intended to arrive alongside iOS 16, the newest version of Apple’s iPhone operating system that runs on the newest iPhone 14.

However the feature seems to have run into difficulties, according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, who says it has faced “fairly significant technical and engineering challenges in rolling out the service, leading to delays”.

Moreover, other Apple features that are yet to be released say that they will be coming “later this year” but Pay Later is the only one that Apple has said will come “in a future update” - and that, in the United States, it might not be available in all regions. It could be that this means the feature will not come until iOS 16.4, set to come in the spring of 2023.

Apple has been working on its Pay Later for over a year, previous reports have indicated, even creating a subsidiary company called Apple Financing to facilitate credit checks – although Apple chief executive Tim Cook was concerned with the risk to Apple’s reputation.

The smartphone giant has had to branch out into other industries in recent years as iPhone sales slowed. In 2016, Apple’s profits fell for the first time since the launch of the iPod in 2001, and in 2018, although revenue increased, iPhone sales stalled.

One year after, Apple saw its services business - which includes Apple Pay and streaming service Apple Music - saw its revenue rise to £8.7 billion, an “all-time record for Services”, Tim Cook said.

Apple has already launched monthly subscriptions including Apple Music, Apple TV+ and Apple Arcade, and is reportedly considering a subscription plan for people to buy the iPhone itself.