CommBank partners with Apple Pay

Sally McMullen 14 December 2018 NEWS

After years of battling for NFC access, the big bank will finally offer Apple Pay in January 2019.

2019 hasn't even begun and it's already looking to kick off to a good start! Commonwealth Bank has announced that it is partnering with Apple Pay from January 2019. This Apple Pay alliance also extends to Bankwest's 1.1 million customers. No specific launch date has been confirmed yet, but this news comes as a surprise after many years of CBA fighting with Apple Pay for NFC access.

Apple Pay will be available to CBA and Bankwest credit card and debit card holders, allowing them to link their cards to the mobile wallet to make contactless payments with their Apple devices in store.

Previously, CBA customers had to order a CommBank PayTag to stick on the back of their Apple device to make contactless payments. It was available for a one-off fee of $2.99.

Apple Pay first launched in Australia with American Express in 2015 and CBA customers have been very vocal about their wish to use it ever since. In 2016 and 2017, CBA (along with other major banks including Westpac and NAB) approached the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in an attempt to negotiate access to Apple Pay and NFC on Apple devices. The ACCC rejected this notion, claiming that it would ultimately be damaging to consumers and would distort competition in the market.

However, this didn't halt CBA customers' constant questions around Apple Pay. After reaching out for feedback, the bank found that Apple Pay remained on the wishlist for many.

"We recently wrote to our customers asking them what the bank could do differently and we received lots of excellent suggestions," said CBA group executive of retail banking services Angus Sullivan. "One of the things we heard repeatedly from our customers is that they want Apple Pay."

Although the announcement is good news to many, some former customers have gone to Twitter to voice their sentiments of "too little, too late".

"Too late, I've already moved away. But I do applaud CommBank for finally launching Apple Pay," tweeted one user.

CBA now joins ANZ as the two Big Four banks with access to Apple Pay. The partnership also means that CBA customers can now use all of the major digital wallets, as the bank has already partnered with Samsung Pay and Google Pay for Android users. CBA also has its own CommBank Tap and Pay mobile wallet which is available for iPhone and Android users. You can compare all of the banks partnered with Apple Pay on Finder.

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Picture: Commonwealth Bank

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