German government wants Apple to give payment services access to nfc chip iPhone

The German government wants Apple to open up the NFC function of iPhones to more payment service providers. Until now, iPhone users can only pay contactless with Apple Pay via the nfc chip. The German government believes that Apple should give other parties equal opportunities.

Apple does not allow apps from financial institutions and competing payment services to access the iPhone’s NFC chip. As a result, these services are forced to use Apple Pay or to resort to more cumbersome payment methods, such as scanning a QR code. The German federal government believes that this gives Apple a competitive advantage and now wants to force the technology company through a legislative amendment to undo the shielding of the NFC function.

The bill for the amendment was adopted by the Bundestag on Thursday, Handelsblatt reported. If the Federal Council also approves the measure, Apple will also have to open up the iPhone’s NFC function to other payment services and financial institutions in the future. iPhone users would then be able to pay contactless without using Apple Pay.

Apple has reportedly reacted with great surprise to the proposal to amend the law. “We fear that such a measure could endanger user privacy and the security of financial data,” a company spokesperson said. He added that Apple would like to work with the German federal government to clarify the technological background of Apple Pay.

Spokesperson Jens Zimmermann of the SPD group sees this as an attempt by Apple to have the bill withdrawn or watered down. He emphatically rejects Apple’s ‘lobby’ and states that parliament is not intimidated by international companies.

With Android smartphones there is no monopoly for one particular payment service. The NFC function can be used by both Google Pay and other payment apps.

Image: Apple