You’ve heard about tap to pay, contactless payment and NFC, but what do they actually mean for you? And more importantly, just how secure are they? With Apple Pay now leading the charge into unchartered waters, changing the way we purchase, this is a tech development you’ll want to pay attention to.

ANZ has made the leap in being the first of the Big 4 banks to support Apple Pay here in Australia. Apple Pay allows mobile users to make payments at an EFTPOS point of sale with contactless technology (so, anywhere where you can already ‘tap and pay’ with a card), replacing the credit card chip and pin or magnetic strip at point-of-sale terminals. This, as well as many banks offering ‘cardless cash’ withdrawal options, logging into your account directly through your online banking app and withdrawing cash from a nearby ATM, the disaster of a forgotten wallet ruining an entire day is a thing of the past. 

How does it work?

NFC chips operate as a part of a wireless link. One NFC chip can activate another chip, where data between the two are transferred when held a short distance from each other.

With your iPhone, you can pay without opening an app or unlocking your screen. The NFC technology does it all. All you need to do is hold your phone close to the contactless reader at the point of sale, much like you would when ‘tapping’ a credit or debit card, while holding your finger on Touch ID.

With your Apple Watch, all you need to do is double click the side button and hold the face up to the contactless reader at point of sale. Watch the short video below to see exactly how it works.

 

Is it safe?

Apple Pay is similar to other contactless methods of payment, such as Paypass, used in many credit or debit cards with NFC chips. It also uses Apple’s Touch ID to ensure that the authorized user is granting permission for the transaction to occur.

Your card numbers aren’t stored on your device, and they aren’t shared with merchants either. If anything, it’s even safer than a traditional credit card as your card details or pin are not visible to anyone.

Can I use it?

If you’ve got an iPhone 6 or 6 Plus or above, you’ll be able to use Apple Pay. At the time of writing, the only bank of the Big 4 to add support for Apple Pay is ANZ, who’ve seen a surge in applications for credit and debit card accounts since adding Apple Pay in April 2016.

What’s in store for the future?

Microsoft is set to reveal its NFC payment system with its Windows 10 release and Android Pay and Samsung Pay are already live in other countries, with Australia expected to follow in coming months.

Want to know what else you can do from your smart phone?

We work with leading technology solutions, many of which are controlled at the tap of a button. From being able to control the music in any room of your home in the palm of your hand, to remotely giving a tradesperson access to your home while you’re at the office and observe when they leave, live, by security camera, from your iPad’s screen – the options truly are endless. Curious? Let’s chat.