Apple Pay launches in Germany with support for 15 banks and services
Making good on promises to take Apple Pay live in Germany before year's end, Apple on Tuesday activated services of its mobile payments solution in the region with support for 15 financial institutions including Comdirect and Deutsche Bank.
Apple Pay partners pushed out notifications early Tuesday morning, notifying customers that their credit cards are now ready to register within the Wallet app, according to local reports posted to Twitter and other social media outlets.
Initial support is provided by Comdirect, Deutsche Bank, Fidor Bank, Hanseatic Bank, HypoVereinsbank and prepaid service Edenred. Mobile banking services Boon, Bunq, N26, o2, Square and VIMpay also offer integration, as do credit card companies American Express, MasterCard and Visa.
Apple Pay is accepted at a number of retailers in Germany including Aldi, Avia, Berhska, Cigo, Ditsch, dm, Galeria Kaufhof, HEM, Kaufland, Lidl, Netto, Real and more.
The release arrives four months after Apple officially announced plans to deliver Apple Pay to Germany, and one day after a report citing banking industry sources said the service would launch sometime this week. Rumors surrounding a German release have circulated for months, but a firm launch timeline remained elusive until last month when Apple updated its regional Apple Pay website to read "coming soon."
Apple's German language website has not been refreshed to reflect the new availability, but that is expected to change as the service continues to roll out over the coming hours.
Germany's relatively late adoption is thought to be a result of pushback from local banks; As with other major market introductions, like Australia, fees were a bone of contention for Germany's financial institutions.
Prior to Germany, Apple debuted the first-party payments solution in Belgium and Kazakhstan in late November.
Apple Pay launched domestically in 2014 with support for a handful of banks and integrations with major credit card companies. The product has since expanded to a number of countries around the world, including major markets like Australia, Canada, China, Hong Kong, Japan, Russia and the U.K. With today's availability, Apple's payments service is available to iPhone, Apple Watch and Mac users in 33 territories.