Apple Pay is most likely to win the big victory in Australia
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) on Monday rejected a request from top Australian banks to seek collective negotiation with Apple over Apple pay.
Common wealth Bank of Australia, National Bank of Australia Ltd., Westpac Banking Corp. and Bendigo & Adelaide Bank Ltd. sought to enter into collective negotiation with the iPhone maker to gain access to NFC controller in iPhones. The attempt to seek collective negotiation was to strike a deal that would grant them uninterrupted access to NFC hardware, allowing them to offer their own payment services using Apple’s technology.
The four giant banks also applied for the removal of the subscription charges that Apple imposes on banks for the use of its flagship mobile payment service.
The ACCC said that allowing banks to negotiate with Apple as a bloc “could reduce competition between the banks in the supply of mobile payment services for iPhones,”
“While the ACCC accepts that the opportunity for the banks to collectively negotiate and boycott would place them in a better bargaining position with Apple, the benefits are currently uncertain and may be limited,” Rod Sims, chairman of the Australian Competition & Consumer Commission said in a statement.
In the draft decision, the ACCC further said that the decision to prevent the banks from negotiating with the iPhone maker does not stop restrict them from launching their own wallet systems.
“Banks can already offer competing digital wallets on iPhones without direct access to NFC, through their own apps using Apple Pay payment technology, or using NFC tags. Banks can also offer digital wallets on the Android platform,” Mr. Sims added.
The ACCC further emphasized on the promotion of competition between the banks and said that mobile wallets like Apple Pay would allow the consumer to easily switch between banks using the same digital payment system.
However, the battle isn’t over yet. Since ACCC has only issues a draft determination and is seeking submission before giving announcing its final verdict, the banks are more likely to lodge an appeal against the final decision.