Commonwealth Bank expands Apple Pay to business cards

CBA praises the Cupertino system it long fought against that has seen mobile payments increase by 400%.
Written by Chris Duckett, Contributor on

The Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA) announced on Wednesday that it is extending the deployment of Apple Pay to holders of business cards.

The yellow and black bank praised Apple Pay as being "an easy, secure, and private way to pay that's fast and convenient".

After boycotting Apple Pay in mid-2016, CBA reversed its stance in December when it announced that it would support the use of Apple Pay for personal customers.

The bank said on Wednesday that since the reversal, it has seen mobile payments increase by 400%.

"We are extending Apple Pay to business customers because they asked for it, and it's part of our commitment to listen to our customers, put their needs first, and take action to become a simpler, better bank," CBA executive general manager of business customer solutions Clive van Horen said.

"Delivering simple, intuitive digital payment solutions that provide choice and convenience will continue to be a key focus for us in 2019."

Prior to adopting Apple Pay, CBA, Westpac, NAB, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank had formed a cartel to attempt to access the near-field communication (NFC) chip inside Apple devices. After a few months, the banks reduced their demands to only seeking access to Apple's NFC tech, annoyed that Apple does not allow other entities to directly access its technology.

The banks previously said that using systems such as Android Pay was "unrealistic" in the Australian market.

"These alternatives are unrealistic in Australia, which has the world's highest adoption of contactless NFC card payments and one of the world's highest iPhone market shares, particularly among customers likely to use mobile payments," the banks said, pointing to Android penetration in the rest of the world as being higher than in Australia.

"In Australia, potential mobile wallet providers other than Apple are locked out of the established payment infrastructure in respect of the clear majority of relevant customers."

The cartel lost its fight in March 2017.

Since that time, the former members of the cartel have adopted Google Pay, Samsung Pay, as well as Apple Pay to varying degrees.

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