Apple to allow businesses in the US to accept payments by tapping iPhones together

Apple Tap to Pay illustration
The company has yet to confirm if the functionality will come to New Zealand. Photo credit: Supplied / Apple

Apple is launching new functionality that will allow payments to be accepted by businesses by tapping iPhones together.

Tap to Pay will be released later this year, with the capability first being available to millions of businesses in the United States.

Apple was unable to confirm whether Tap to Pay will come to New Zealand in the future.

Using Tap to Pay, contactless credit and debit card transactions will be able to take place without any additional hardware of payment terminals.

Connections from other digital wallets including Google Pay will also be available.

Depending on a rollout in Aotearoa and any commission charges, which Apple hasn't specified at this point, this potentially opens up ways for businesses here to save money on transactions.

"As more and more consumers are tapping to pay with digital wallets and credit cards, Tap to Pay on iPhone will provide businesses with a secure, private, and easy way to accept contactless payments and unlock new checkout experiences," Jennifer Bailey, Apple's vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet said.

"In collaboration with payment platforms, app developers, and payment networks, we're making it easier than ever for businesses of all sizes to seamlessly accept contactless payments and continue to grow their business."

Merchants will accept payments via an iOS app on an iPhone XS or later device, with customers using their near-field communication (NFC) phones, Apple Watch, credit card or other device to complete the payment securely.

Apple Tap to Pay illustration
Photo credit: Supplied / Apple

According to the Cupertino-based tech giant, privacy is built in the process and the company won't know what is being purchased or who is buying it.

"Payment data is protected by the same technology that makes Apple Pay private and secure," Apple said.

The announcement comes after a January rumour published by Bloomberg that the functionality was close to rolling out.

Apple purchased startup Mobeewave in 2020, which was focused on the tap technology.