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How To Send Money Through iMessage

The introduction of Apple Pay Cash in iOS 11.2 means you no longer have to depend on third party payment systems to transfer money. Once installed, you will be able to send money through iMessage to anyone you like.

iOS 11.2 wasn’t originally supposed to be released when it was. An apparent bug in iOS 11 forced an early release in order to address it. The bonus being we get to sample Apple Pay Cash earlier than planned.

Released in early December 2017, the update is now live and downloadable but Apple Pay Cash is being gradually rolled out so may not be a part of your download right away. Currently only available in the US, the system is gradually rolling out to users. Presumably, once everything is seen to be working fine, the rollout will continue globally.

Apple Pay Cash

Apple Pay Cash is the Cupertino giant’s answer to Circle or Venmo. It acts as a digital wallet on your phone that you can load and send to other users or other users can send to you. Money received will be loaded into the Wallet app part of Apple Pay Cash and can be used anywhere that accepts Apple Pay.

You can also send cash amounts to other Apple Pay Cash users which will be added to their Wallet for them to use in the same way.

Setting up Apple Pay Cash

Once you get the update that contains Apple Pay Cash, setting up is very straightforward. You will need a compatible device that uses iOS 11.2, two-factor authentication set up and a credit or debit card set up in your Wallet. You will also need to be over 18 to use the service.

  1. Set up your Wallet by following these instructions [1].
  2. Add money to your Wallet by selecting Add Money within the app.
  3. Enter an amount. The minimum is currently $10.
  4. Select Add and confirm the card to use with the transaction.
  5. Use Face ID or Touch ID to confirm the payment.

You will see your balance increase by the amount you select in the top right of the Wallet screen. Your Wallet is now able to send money through iMessage.

To check your balance at any time, select the Wallet app and then the Apple Pay Cash card. The balance should be shown on the screen.

Send money through iMessage

Once Apple Pay Cash is set up and you have a positive balance, you can now send money to any other iMessage user. It works just like a normal SMS message but with a cash bonus attached, literally.

To send money through iMessage:

  1. Open iMessage and type a message to the recipient.
  2. Select the Apple Store icon and then the Apple Pay icon at the bottom of the window.
  3. Add the cash amount to the new window that appears.
  4. Verify the amount and the transaction using Touch ID or Face ID.
  5. Send the message.

The first transaction you make using Apple Pay Cash triggers the inevitable terms and conditions. Agree to continue. Once agreed, you shouldn’t be bothered again until they change significantly.

The recipient should then receive the message as normal and will accept the payment. The cash amount will then be credited to their Wallet.

Send money using Siri

As you would expect, you can get Siri to send money to someone too. If you have Apple Pay Cash already set up and the recipient is also an Apple user, it couldn’t be easier. Simply say ‘Siri, send ten dollars to James for the tickets’. Siri will look in your Contacts for James, take $10 from your Wallet and send it with the message ‘For the tickets’.

You would obviously change the dollar amount and contact to suit your own needs.

What else do I need to know about Apple Pay Cash?

Apple Pay Cash is a peer-to-peer payment system which is based entirely within the Wallet app. You don’t actually need a bank account linked to Apple Pay Cash to receive money but you obviously do to load money. Every iOS user has a Wallet account created automatically with their Apple ID.

Apple Pay Cash is not always free. If you use a debit card, transactions will be free but if you use a credit card, you will be subject to a 3% fee per transaction.

Apple Pay Cash is only available in iOS 11.2 and will only work on iPhone SE, iPhone 6 onwards, iPad Pro, iPad 5th generation, iPad Air 2, iPad Mini 3 onwards and Apple Watch. The system is currently rolling out in the US and will go global at some point afterwards.