This week, I have two quick things to share that don’t warrant an article: an explanation of why TidBITS members using Apple Pay may see incorrect credit card expiration dates and the news of Apple Music Sing, which fills me with dread.
Apple Pay Transactions Get Weird Expiration Dates
Our support wizard, Lauri Reinhardt, recently solved a minor mystery that had confused a few TidBITS members. When people who had used Apple Pay for their TidBITS memberships received email from our system about a failed renewal payment, the credit card expiration date listed was incorrect. Since one of the most likely reasons for a failed payment is an expired card, the incorrect date caused some consternation.
Lauri discovered that Apple Pay’s tokenization process prevents Stripe, our payment processor, from knowing the expiration date for the actual card. Instead, Stripe—and the Paid Memberships Pro plug-in that we use to manage TidBITS accounts—displays a seemingly random expiration date from the tokenized card. The problem is purely cosmetic and doesn’t block transactions in any way.
The practical upshot is that if you used Apple Pay to pay for your TidBITS membership and you see an incorrect expiration date associated with your card data in your account information, don’t worry about it unless you also get a notification that a transaction failed. In that case, try a different card or contact Lauri at [email protected] so she can help you figure out what to do. My apologies for any confusion, and thanks for supporting TidBITS!
This date quirk is the first downside of using Apple Pay instead of a straight credit card transaction that I’ve seen. In all other ways, Apple Pay’s tokenization of credit card data is a good thing because it significantly increases security.
Apple Music Adds Karaoke
As an entirely non-musical person, little fills me with more dread than karaoke. The occasional group rendition of “Happy Birthday” is as close as I get to singing. Happily, I’ve never found myself in a situation where karaoke was happening, much less where I would be expected to perform. I hope to keep it that way.
You can thus imagine my enthusiasm level for Apple Music Sing, a forthcoming feature that enables Apple Music subscribers to sing along with “tens of millions of the world’s most singable songs.” I’m sure lots of people will like Apple Music Sing when it becomes available later this month, and if you’re among them, I hope you have fun. I’ll continue to leave the singing to the professionals.