Which Australian banks let you manage your finances through Apple Watch? We take a look.
When the Apple Watch was launched in 2015, it kicked off millions of excited discussions among gadget lovers around the world. From staying in touch with friends and family to keeping track of fitness goals, the Apple Watch has certainly had a big impact on the everyday lives of early adopters of the wearable tech.
One area the Apple Watch is having an impact on is the banking sector. Following the rise of online and then mobile banking, the introduction of banking services on the Apple Watch offers a simple and convenient way to check your balance, withdraw cash from an ATM and even pay for purchases.
But which Australian banks offer Apple Watch functionality and what sort of banking tasks can you handle from your wrist?
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Banks offering services through Apple Watch
Below we take a look at different banks' apps and their features.
|NAB||NAB Apple Watch|
|Westpac||Westpac Mobile Banking|
|Bank of Melbourne||Bank of Melbourne Mobile Banking|
|St.George||St.George Mobile Banking|
|BankSA||BankSA Mobile Banking|
|ING||ING Australia Banking|
A closer look at the Big Four banks
ANZ made headlines around the country in April 2016 when it became the first Australian bank to process payments through Apple Pay. The service allows Apple Watch and iPhone 6s users to make contactless payments. This announcement was a boon for ANZ, with none of the other Big Four banks offering the Apple Pay service at the time of writing.
Apple Pay via Apple Watch is available for a wide range of ANZ Visa credit and debit cards and ANZ American Express cards. But currently it is not available on any ANZ Mastercards, Access cards or Corporate cards. You can add up to eight cards to the Wallet app on your Apple Watch and then use those cards to make contactless payments.
To pay for a purchase in store using your Apple Watch, you’ll need to enter your passcode when you put the watch on your wrist, and then double click the side button on your watch when it comes time to pay. It’s then simply a matter of selecting your ANZ card and holding the watch face near the contactless reader. Your watch will vibrate and beep to confirm the success of a payment.
However, at this stage Apple Pay cannot be used to withdraw cash in store when you make a purchase, or to use a contactless-enabled ATM.
How to setup ANZ with Apple Pay on Your Apple Watch
- Pair your iPhone with your Apple Watch and open the Watch app on your phone.
- Tap ‘Wallet & Apple Pay’ and select ‘Add Credit or Debit Card’, then tap ‘Next’.
- Enter the card’s details manually or capture them using your iPhone camera.
- Enter the card’s security code and tap ‘Next’.
- Agree to the ANZ with Apple Pay Terms and Conditions.
- You may be sent a verification code via SMS or need to call your bank for security reasons.
The ANZ App allows you to check the balance of all available bank accounts linked to your ANZ iPhone app and also view recent transactions. You can use your paired iPhone to enable the ANZ for Apple Watch app, and then enter the four-digit PIN on your Apple Watch to complete the setup process.
While it doesn’t yet offer Apple Pay services, CommBank does allow its customers to perform a range of transactions and other banking tasks via their Apple Watch. The CommBank app works on Apple and Android smartwatches and is designed to make it simpler and more convenient to manage your money.
The CommBank app for Apple Watch lets you:
- Check your balance on the go;
- Locate the nearest ATM using Google Maps; and
- Use the Cardless Cash feature to withdraw money from an ATM without your card.
CommBank also emphasises the fact that all of the features in your CommBank app are covered by its 100% Security Guarantee, so you’ll be covered for any loss if someone makes an unauthorised transaction using your account.
How to setup the CommBank app on Your Apple Watch
- Make sure you have the latest operating system installed on your phone.
- Turn on Bluetooth on your phone.
- Open the Apple Watch companion app on your iPhone.
- Select ‘Start Pairing’ on your Apple Watch and iPhone.
- Once pairing is complete, the CommBank app should appear on your Apple Watch within a few seconds.
Like CommBank and NAB customers, Westpac account holders aren’t yet able to use Apple Pay with their Apple Watch. However, the good news is that Westpac Mobile Banking is compatible with Apple Watches, allowing you to manage a range of simple everyday banking tasks right there on your wrist.
Westpac Mobile Banking for Apple Watch lets you:
- Check account and credit card balances;
- Get turn-by-turn directions to your nearest Westpac ATM or branch;
- Request a Get Cash code on your iPhone and then view it on your Apple Watch;
- Receive reminders to inform Westpac when you are travelling overseas; and
- Find your nearest Global Alliance ATM while abroad;
How to setup Westpac Mobile Banking on Your Apple Watch
- Make sure you have an iPhone 5 or above and that it has iOS 8.2 or above.
- Install the latest version of the Westpac Mobile Banking app on your iPhone.
- Pair your Apple Watch with your iPhone.
- The Westpac Mobile Banking app will automatically appear on your watch.
NAB also has an offering for wearable tech owners called NAB Apple Watch. It allows you to take care of a range of banking essentials. The app is designed to make it faster and easier to take care of everyday banking tasks at a convenient time and place.
NAB Apple Watch lets you:
- Use the Quick Balances feature to check how much you have in your accounts;
- Locate your nearest ATM or branch and get directions to find it; and
- Call NAB from anywhere.
How to setup NAB Apple Watch on Your Apple Watch
- Make sure you have iOS 8.2 or above installed on your iPhone.
- Pair your Apple Watch with your smartphone.
- Download the latest version of the NAB Mobile app from the Apple Store.
Looking to the future
Judging from the social media response to ANZ’s launch of Apple Pay services in April 2016, the other three big four banks are expected to follow suit. Media reports have certainly suggested that this is the case, although Westpac, CommBank and NAB have all claimed they are unable to discuss the status of the talks with Apple because of confidentiality agreements.
At the same time, Android Pay, Google’s answer to the Apple Pay system, is expected to launch sometime around the middle of 2016. ANZ, Westpac, Bendigo and Adelaide Bank, ING and Macquarie Bank are expected to be among the financial institutions offering support for Google’s version of contactless payments. Samsung Pay, which is already available in the US, China and South Korea, is expected to hit our shores before the end of 2016.
As for the Apple Watch, other banks continue to roll out their own Watch-compatible apps, with ING, St.George, Bank of Melbourne and more all offering their own take on banking using wearable tech.