Apple files for a patent that monitors your spending habits

As we know, Apple sometimes enjoys filing futuristic patents that get all our imaginations excited, and it seems one of their more recent ones is no exception. Titled, "Method and system for delivering advertising to mobile terminals", the patent relates to a system of target marketing, based on what you can or can't afford. Filed back in March with the USPTO, the technology would sit on your device and track your debit or credit card spending habits.

As the document explains, "An advantage of such targeted advertising is that only advertisements for goods and services which particular users can afford are delivered to these users." Customers won't need to worry about products they can't afford being promoted to them.


Apple are by no means the first organisation to pursue this area of research, with many others introducing different systems that might be based on monitoring spending habits, account balances and credit limits - with the aim to drive higher convention rates. Many companies use customers' internet histories to customise online advertsing, suggesting products similar to recent purchases they might have made.

However, as enthusiasm grows for personal information to be shared more freely, many companies are doing as much as they can to reassure their customers that their information is safe.

This patent could be really helpful for improving the customer experience. It could help users avoid commercial spamming, and like all information held by Apple Pay, it is unlikely that personal information within this app would be sold to advertising companies. We are looking forward to seeing the possible services available, even though it remains slightly scary to think that we are constantly being watched online!