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Apple could be preparing for the US debut of its Apple Pay payments service on October 18, with a leaked memo suggesting the launch date.An internal memo addressed to Walgreens employees in preparation for the upcoming launch suggests the service could be going live on Saturday, October 18, MacRumors has reported.

This is just two days after the expected launch of the latest additions to Apple’s respective iPad and iMac line-ups.

Apple is set to host a media event on October 16, which in turn has prompted additional speculation the Apple Pay service may debut elsewhere in the US on this date.

Apple Pay, which will be available in the US as a free update to iOS 8, was one of the most heavily anticipated features of Apple’s latest generation of iPhones.

The service will be available on the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus and Apple Watch.

It will allow users to make payments by holding their iPhone near a contactless reader with their finger on Touch ID, and can also be used to pay via a single touch in apps.

The Business Spectator recently reported Woolworths CIO Clive Whincup as saying Apple’s move into the payment space could shake up Australia’s retail sector, turning mobile-based payments into the norm.

With the spread of NFC technology, Whincup commented mobile payments may experience a similar uptake as contactless card-based payments, in a trend similarly driven by consumer convenience, the Spectator reported.

Apple has yet to confirm when the service will be launched in Australia.

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