Phone_Pay_Apple_Shutterstock_450

Apple Pay

Apple Pay allows you to make contactless payments using only your iPhone or Apple Watch. Here’s how it works and how you can use it in Australia.

How does Apple Pay work?

For most Australians, contactless payments are nothing new. Most credit cards support tap and go payments, whether it’s using Visa’s underlying payWave infrastructure or Mastercard’s PayPass.

Apple Pay fundamentally works the same way, except instead of digging your credit card out of your wallet and tapping it on the terminal, you tap your iPhone or Apple Watch. Your fingerprint or a secure code is used to verify each purchase made from your chosen bank account or credit card.

The inclusion of NFC (Near Field Communication) chips built into these devices creates a "virtual" card and doesn't distinguish between whether it’s a payWave or PayPass card, or an Apple Pay device. Apple Pay isn’t the only competitor in the smartphone payments space, with Google’s Android Pay and Samsung Pay also set to launch in Australia by the end of 2016.

ApplePay_450

Is Apple Pay secure?

Apple Pay is as secure as a standard NFC "tap and go" credit card. It uses the same underlying infrastructure that authorises card payments, but Apple Pay’s usage of fingerprints for biometric authentication gives it an added layer of security. As that fingerprint data is stored securely on the device, it can't be stolen from elsewhere in the network. This feature gives Apple Pay an added layer of security when compared to credit cards.

People won't be able to get your fingerprint data, so they won't be able to make unauthorised transactions even if they steal your phone. A stolen credit card, on the other hand, can be used for small transactions (typically under $100) without additional verification.

It’s worth noting that if you’re using the Apple Watch as your Apple Pay device, a passcode is used instead of TouchID. This feature is slightly less secure, although the fact that no identifying credit card information – your credit card number, expiry date and so on – is stored or visible on an Apple Watch or iPhone during an Apple Pay transaction means it’s more secure. The usual protections that your institution offers against fraud should also apply to any Apple Pay transaction.

iPhoneSE_450

What do I need to use Apple Pay?

To access Apple Pay you need an iOS device with Apple Pay compatibility. On the iPhone side, that’s the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus and iPhone SE. If you’ve got an Apple Watch, you can use it with any of those devices, as well as the iPhone 5, 5c and 5s.

You don’t have to update your iOS installation on your iPhone every time there’s a new update, but if you’re on an older iPhone device with a much older iOS variant, you may have to update to access Apple Pay. Once you’ve passed that hardware hurdle, you need a financial institution that supports Apple Pay in Australia.

AppleWatch_450

Which banks support Apple Pay in Australia?

Apple Pay launched in the US back in 2014, but has been remarkably slow coming to Australia. American Express was the first to launch Apple Pay down under in late 2015, and even then it was only for cards directly issued by Amex. No other Amex cards offered Apple Pay because the interchange rate that Apple wanted from the banks for each Apple Pay transaction led to lengthy negotiations.

The first of the big banks to jump on the Apple Pay bandwagon in Australia was ANZ, which now offers Apple Pay to its customers and has seen a significant rise in that customer base. It’s expected that the other major banks will get on board with Apple Pay, simply due to the widespread use of iPhone devices in Australia.

It’s worth noting that if you hold a credit card from a financial institution in a country where Apple Pay has already rolled out – for example, the USA or UK – you may be able to use Apple Pay through your overseas card while travelling in Australia. Check with your provider prior to travelling.

Comparison of Credit Cards with Apple Pay

Rates last updated January 21st, 2017
Rewards Points per $ spent (AMEX) Rewards Points per $ spent (VISA/MC) Interest Free Period Purchase rate (p.a.) Annual fee
American Express Essential Credit Card
Receive a $50 credit on eligible spend and get Smartphone screen insurance combined with a no annual fee for life card. Also enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer rate for 12 months.
1 Up to 55 days on purchases 14.99% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Platinum Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
Receive a low introductory offer of 0% p.a. on purchases for 3 months and 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months. Also, enjoy an annual fee waiver in the first year.
0 0 Up to 55 days on purchases 0% p.a. for 3 months (reverts to 19.74% p.a.) $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($87 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
Receive 10,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement. Enjoy a $200 travel credit every year and get 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers.
1 0 Up to 55 days on purchases 20.74% p.a. $195 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Frequent Flyer Black
Earn 75,000 bonus Qantas Points after you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months plus enjoy $0 annual fee for the first year. Plus, enjoy easy payments with Apple Pay.
1.5 0.75 Up to 55 days on purchases 19.99% p.a. $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($425 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Discovery Card
Enjoy up to 7,500 extra Qantas Frequent Flyer Points. Plus 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months, all for a $0 annual fee.
1 0 Up to 44 days on purchases 20.74% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Credit Card
Get 25,000 bonus Reward Points after your first eligible purchase is made within 3 months of card approval and earn 1.5 points per dollar spent.
1.5 0.75 Up to 44 days on purchases 18.79% p.a. $80 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Frequent Flyer
Receive 25,000 bonus Qantas Points when you apply online, are approved and spend $2,500 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months. Plus enjoy a waived annual fee for the first year.
1 0.5 Up to 44 days on purchases 19.99% p.a. $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($95 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Escape Card
Enjoy 7,500 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement and earn up to 2 points for every $1 you spend, together with a $0 annual fee.
1 0 Up to 44 days on purchases 20.74% p.a. $0 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Platinum
Receive 50,000 bonus Reward Points after your first eligible purchase is made within 3 months of card approval. Plus earn up to 2 Reward Points for every dollar spent on purchases.
2 1 Up to 55 days on purchases 18.79% p.a. $95 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Frequent Flyer Platinum
Get 50,000 bonus Qantas Points when you spend $2,500 on eligible purchases in the first three months and enjoy a waived annual fee for the first year. Also earn up to 1.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent on purchases.
1.5 0.5 Up to 55 days on purchases 19.99% p.a. $0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($295 p.a. thereafter) Go to site More info
ANZ Rewards Black Credit Card
Earn 75,000 Reward Points after your first eligible purchase in the first 3 months, up to 3 reward points per dollar spent and unlimited access to airport lounges with complimentary travel insurance.
3 1.25 Up to 55 days on purchases 18.79% p.a. $375 p.a. Go to site More info
ANZ Low Rate
$100 Back plus 0% p.a. for the first 6 months on purchases from approval.
0 0 Up to 55 days on purchases 0% p.a. for 6 months (reverts to 13.49% p.a.) $58 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Business Card
One of the original charge cards from American Express that offers complimentary insurances including purchase protection and accident cover.
1 0 Up to 51 days on purchases $109 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Business Credit Card
Up to 51 days interest-free on purchases plus earn 1 Qantas Point per dollar spent on eligible purchases.
1 Up to 51 days on purchases $299 p.a. More info
American Express Velocity Platinum Card
Enjoy up to 50,000 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum required spend and earn up to 3 rewards points per dollar spent. Also receive a complimentary return flight every year.
1 0 Up to 44 days on purchases 20.74% p.a. $349 p.a. Go to site More info

Lead Image: Shutterstock

Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Related Posts

Get the best deal on your mobile phone

Compare iPhone 7 plans
Compare iPhone 7 plans

Compare iPhone 7 plans from Telstra, Optus, Virgin and Vodafone.

More info...
Need more data?
Need more data?

Find plans with more than 10GB from Telstra, Optus, Virgin and more.

More info...
The best price on your next phone
The best price on your next phone

Don't pay full price on your next phone purchase.

More info...
Kogan Mobile: 30% off 365 day plans
Kogan Mobile: 30% off 365 day plans

Kogan Mobile's latest price blitz offers huge savings if you buy big.

More info...

Ask a Question

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Disclaimer: At finder.com.au we provide factual information and general advice. Before you make any decision about a product read the Product Disclosure Statement and consider your own circumstances to decide whether it is appropriate for you.
Rates and fees mentioned in comments are correct at the time of publication.
By submitting this question you agree to the finder.com.au privacy policy, receive follow up emails related to finder.com.au and to create a user account where further replies to your questions will be sent.

Ask a question
feedback