Rite Aid, a leading US drug store and pharmacy which previously blocked Apple Pay, will start accepting the payment service, as well as Google Wallet, from 15 August at all of its nearly 4,600 branches nationwide.
The company will also accept the forthcoming Android Pay, as well as contactless credit and debit cards.
Rite Aid gave no reason for its climbdown since last year when it and CVS, another US drug store, blocked Apple Pay. But both are members of the Merchant Customer Exchange (MCX) consortium of leading US retailers which support a rival payment service called CurrentC, which has yet to launch. Apple Pay has been available in the US since last October, gaining traction.
“Increasingly, consumers are actively seeking out and incorporating mobile technology into many facets of their life, including their shopping and purchasing decisions,” said Ken Martindale, CEO of Rite Aid stores and president of Rite Aid Corporation.
Accepting mobile payments makes life easier for consumers, he added. And investing in mobile technology is one piece of the company’s digital strategy.