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Apple today posted a job listing on its website looking for a Payments Software Engineer that will “help build a next generation payment platform.” Apple says the payment system will consist of integration of payment devices, middleware and acquirers that will “push the boundaries in new markets for Apple Retail.”

Apple is interested in experts in eCommerce, banking, retail, and card industries and lists various payment technologies including Chip&Pin, bank messaging specifications, country specific technologies such as EFTPOS (AUS) and Interac (CAN), and testing solutions used by Visa, Mastercard and others including ADVT, M-TIP, AEIPS, and Interac testing.

Apple currently uses a custom housing for the iPod touch with a combination of third-party hardware to process payments in its retail stores. Apple also has its Apple Store iOS app that lets users purchase products for personal pickup or quickly scan and purchase accessories when in a retail store. We already reported the company has some big plans for retail in the near future with its new Bluetooth 4.0 powered iBeacons technology. Apple is installing its iBeacon transmitters in retail stores in the U.S. with plans of beaming promotions and other relevant info to customers walking around the store. As more and more big companies take advantage of iBeacons and even start offering the ability to complete payments using the technology, perhaps iBeacons will play a role in Apple’s new payment platform for retail. It would certainly be a great opportunity for Apple to finally introduce its own payment system, a competitor to the NFC-based Google Wallet for example, but we’ll have to wait to find out for sure what Apple has planned.