Amex to bring Apple Pay to Singapore card users next year

American Express announced it will roll out Apple Pay to consumer, small business and corporate card users in Singapore from next year. PHOTO: APPLE

SINGAPORE - American Express (Amex) card users in Singapore can start tapping their iPhone, iPad and Apple Watch to pay for goods in 2016.

Amex announced on Wednesday (Oct 28) that it will roll out Apple's mobile payment service, Apple Pay, to its consumer, small business and corporate card users in Singapore next year.

Currently available in the United States and United Kingdom, Amex's Apple Pay rollout plan also includes Canada and Australia later this year, followed by Spain and Hong Kong in 2016.

Like the ez-link stored value cards, Apple Pay uses near-field communication (NFC) technology to transmit data between an Apple device and a contactless reader. Users add their credit card details to a digital wallet stored on their devices. This information is transmitted when the device is placed near the contactless reader during payment.

Tourists from the US and UK have been able to use Apple Pay at retail stores here that have these NFC contactless readers, although locally issued credit cards are not accepted by Apple Pay at present.

Apple Pay works with Apple devices that have the Touch ID fingerprint sensor, such as the iPhone 6 and the iPad Air 2. It can also work with some older Apple devices via the Apple Watch.

Apple CEO Tim Cook broke the news about the expansion of Apple Pay during the company's earnings call earlier today. Apple reported record fourth-quarter earnings of US$51.5 billion (S$71.9 billion), driven by iPhone sales.

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