Safari 11.1 in iOS 11.3 Enables Payment Request API

| by Kevin Ball Follow 3 Followers on Apr 10, 2018. Estimated reading time: 2 minutes |

In the 11.3 version of iOS, released Thursday, March 29, Apple included version 11.1 of Safari which enables the Payment Request API. This allows web developers to allow users to make payments with saved credit cards and mobile wallets, streamlining payment and checkout flows. According to a Payment Request API Tutorial by Google, Android has supported the Payment Request API since the Chrome 53 release for Android in September 2016, so with the addition of iOS, the Payment Request API is now available for 98% of the US and UK mobile markets.

This update allows websites to take advantage of mobile wallets in the same way native applications have, facilitating one-touch based checkout. A study by BigCommerce found that just the act of integrating mobile wallets could increase conversion rates by up to 10%, while a Google announcement about the Payment Request API highlighted that 66% of mobile purchases are made on mobile websites rather than native applications.

Developers looking to integrate the Payment Request API as quickly as possible can look to industry leaders like Stripe and Braintree for assistance. Stripe has a dedicated guide for supporting Apple Pay, claiming that:

It takes as little as 10 minutes to support Apple Pay on the Web.

Braintree also has also published a dedicated guide to supporting Apple Pay. Both platforms require developers to take a few steps to register their domains with Apple, but provide tools that make it simple to do so.

Stripe handles the most, simply giving developers a file to add to their site and tells them to prompt Stripe to register their domain with Apple. Braintree requires developers to set up an icloud account, but also provides control panel tools for domain registration.

Developers looking to dive deeper into the Payment Request API and can check out the documentation on MDN. According to the documentation:

The Payment Request API is a system that is meant to eliminate checkout forms. It vastly improves user workflow during the purchase process, providing a more consistent user experience and enabling web merchants to easily leverage disparate payment methods.

Even if using a payment processor that does not accept mobile wallets, it is possible to accept stored cards using the ‘basic card’ payment method and still facilitate the checkout process.

For a video introduction to the Payment Request API, check out 'Streamlining Online Checkout Using Web Standards', a presentation from QConSF 2017.

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