Australia has a better prepared payment ecosystem for Apple Pay than the US, according to Infosys.
Consulting and systems integration managing partner, Robert Liong, said all payments terminals in Australia are already accepting EMV chip and PIN-based cards.
“EMV is the underlying technology of Apple Pay with some additional features like Touch ID and tokenisation to make it even more secure,” he said.
“This will allow all EMV terminals in Australia to accept Apple Pay’s NFC protocols.”
When Apple Pay was introduced in the US, VISA, MasterCard and Amex all supported it.
Liong said it will be up to card issuing banks and merchants to work with Apple to add support the technologies used by Apple Pay, such as processing the dynamic security code, iPhone device account number, and unique payment number.
“All payments participants in Australia will now have to support the EMV’s new tokenisation specification that was released in March 2014 to support the system,” he said.
Apple Pay is the first implementation of EMV’s tokenisation specification in the world.
Need for local partnerships
For Apple Pay to be usable at the time of a purchase, Liong said Apple must take the first step in partnering with issuing banks, payments networks and merchants.
However, weeks following the launch of the new iPhones, not a single Australian bank is Apple Pay enabled.
Infosys digital strategist and A/NZ head of enterprise mobility consulting, George Eby Mathew, expects merchants on the EMV network to automatically accept Apple Pay once Australian banks endorse the technology, though said there has been a push back from some of the major retailers in the US.
“That’s because Walmart, Best Buy, and others are part of a consortium called MCX [Merchant Customer Exchange], which are working on its own rival smartphone payment app,” he said.
MCX’s smartphone payments system, CurrentC, is set to launch at some point in 2015.
Another potential obstacle for the local uptake of Apple Pay is the penetration of enabled devices.
“The Android smartphone market driven by the likes of Samsung and Google has grown tremendously since the iPhone was first launched, and Apple no longer has the market dominance it once held in the smartphone space,” Mathew said.
Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.