On October 16, 2014 Apple announced a few new products a new iPad Air 2 (pre-ordering a Black/Slate 128GB), an updated Mac Mini, the new iPad Mini 3 (announced as short hand which has me intrigued), OS X Yosemite (I like), a Retina iMac (must have), and details of iOS 8.1 with Apple Pay and the WatchKit framework available for developers in November. These announcements were cool but what was moreso intriguing is Apple Pay that we know more about and Apple SIM that has to be searched for to understand.
First things first Apple announced they signed up 500 additional banks for use with Apple Pay and additional merchants to use the system as well, I'd say this was inevitable but has to be understood how impactful this truly is. Signing up 500 additional banks and working with more merchants increases the usability and likelihood of customers opting for the Apple Pay service. It also helps point out those that aren't using it and if the desire for the service grows as I believe it will said merchants who refuse will feel the effects in some way and they won't easily be able to dismiss it. In all likelihood upon the success of Apple Pay international talks will reach a point of concrete agreements where paying with a mobile device will conceivably become the norm across the globe.
There's a sense from many who write and pray to the "Apple is Doomed" headlines that this payment service won't take off because Google has had Google Wallet for years and it's barely moved anywhere. However their ignorance keeps them blinded that these banks are signing up with Apple for a reason, iCloud hacks aside Apple is still more trusted than Google by consumers and the enterprise. People will grow comfortable with using this service regularly.
Now about this Apple SIM...The Verge and QZ have great articles that describe the impending impact of what this new sim can do and based on what Apple has planned it's very possible that by 2017 the next iPhone someone purchases will allow you to select your carrier as you're signing up by looking at what services and costs are being offered. It essentially gives the consumer more power while taking some away from the carriers, and that's a good thing. These things shouldn't be brushed off so easily, there's no other smartphone or tablet maker that's willing to start a fight with carriers, they're more willing to lay down with them.
How this all shapes the wireless and payment industry over the next few years will be very interesting.