Apple announces new “Tap to Pay” feature for contactless payments, coming later this year

Apple today announced a new “Tap to Pay” feature coming to iPhone later this year. The feature will allow small and large businesses to “seamlessly and securely” accept Apple Pay payments with a simple tap, without the need for additional hardware. The feature will also support contactless credit, debit cards, along with other digital wallets.

In January, Bloomberg reported that the tech giant is working on turning iPhones into payment terminals using its NFC chip. The new payment method will be helpful for small businesses and is expected to launch with iOS 15.4 in Spring. 

Tap to Pay

iPhones will soon accept “Tap to Pay” payments via Apple Pay, contactless credit/debit cards, or other digital wallets without any additional hardware

In a Newsroom post, Apple announced that it is working with third parties and making the platform available to app developers and other payment platforms. Apple says that Stripe will be the first to offer Tap to Pay payments for businesses with more platforms gaining support late this year.

Tap to Pay on iPhone will be available for payment platforms and app developers to integrate into their iOS apps and offer as a payment option to their business customers. Stripe will be the first payment platform to offer Tap to Pay on iPhone to their business customers, including the Shopify Point of Sale app this spring. Additional payment platforms and apps will follow later this year.

Interestingly, Apple is choosing not to keep Tap to Pay restricted to iOS. Instead, it is opening the NFC chip in iPhone to third parties allowing them to create applications that support the technology.

Apple will work closely with leading payment platforms and app developers across the payments and commerce industry to offer Tap to Pay on iPhone to millions of merchants in the US. Tap to Pay on iPhone complements and enhances the robust suite of payment and commerce tools that payment platforms and app developers provide to their merchant customers to help them run and grow their businesses. Tap to Pay on iPhone will work with contactless credit and debit cards from leading payment networks, including American Express, Discover, Mastercard, and Visa.

Shortly after Apple’s announcement, Stripe announced its closed beta for interested merchants, which users can sign up for here

Tap to Pay on iPhone is available through the Stripe Terminal SDK as part of a closed beta program.

If you’re interested in integrating Tap to Pay on iPhone into your app or joining as a supported platform partner, please provide your information and we’ll be in touch with more details.

Tap to Pay

Once Tap to Pay is available, contactless payments will be accepted via any iPhone XS or later device. At checking, customers will be able to pay using Apple Pay on their own iPhone or Apple Watch with no additional hardware required. 

Apple has not announced a release date for Tap to Pay but it has said that the feature will only be available in the United States at launch. According to payment platform Stripe, the feature is “coming this spring”.

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About the Author

Asma is an editor at iThinkDifferent with a strong focus on social media, Apple news, streaming services, guides, mobile gaming, app reviews, and more. When not blogging, Asma loves to play with her cat, draw, and binge on Netflix shows.

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