Apple Pay Rumoured to Launch in Canada in March

Apple pay wallet

The Canadian launch of Apple Pay could be closer than TD Bank’s CIO led us to believe: According to sources familiar with the matter, the recently launched mobile payment platform could make its debut as soon as March.

Just as in other parts of the world (see China and UK), Apple is in negotiation with partners in the country. The sources, talking to 9to5Mac, say Canadian launch partners are “in the process of planning advertising and other promotional material for March”. However, there is a possibility of a later launch if the parties don’t agree on terms.

Sources say partners are currently in negotiations with Apple regarding the launch scheduled to come sometime in the first half of this year. Apple and Canadian launch partners are in the process of planning advertising and other promotional material for March, which indicates that the launch could come as soon as then. Of course, these are still active discussions and it’s possible the talks could fail to result in a launch by March. Several sources, however, tell us Apple is currently targeting that timeframe.

Since the launch of Apple Pay, Canadians have been wondering when the company will bring this mobile payment platform to the country. Fact is, Canadians are ready to leave their wallet back home and use their device instead, according to a recent PayPal study.

While the list of possible partners (at launch) is still an open question, Apple Pay expert Brian Roemmele says there seems to be a race between Canada and the UK. Let’s wait and see who gets it first – Canada, the UK, or maybe even China?

Technology enthusiast, rocker, biker and writer of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter or contact me via email: istvan@iphoneincanada.ca

  • Spiridus

    This is great news! Unfortunately, I bank with RBC and they’re always the last to catch up with technology.

  • SOB

    I notice that more apps are starting to support passport integration. I am enjoying adding my cards to passport and not having to take the physical cards with me. Hoping ApplePay will come soon and get supported by major retailers.

  • Crosseyedmofo

    i predict td, amex and chase to be launch cards

  • Jay

    Dont know about that, seems like they’re pretty on point with their app and other banking services

  • Tim

    Their app looks terrible, very iOS 3 or 4 in terms of design.

  • I sure hope the banks in Canada allow us to use our RFID debit cards versus just credit cards with Apple Pay. I love Interac Flash it would like nothing more than to be able to use it on my iPhone, but I am unlikely to get a new credit card (that will for many people undoubtedly come with balances and interest, no matter how good the intent to avoid it) solely to use ApplePay here.

  • ftheroux

    Except they’re one of the few big banks that still does not offer check deposit via their app.

  • Eric

    Its possible to use credit cards without interest.. pay them off.. don’t overspend

  • Sure, in a perfect world. Of course we know the banks are in the business of making money and they know and expect that not everybody will pay off these balances at the end of every month, and many people will run them up. I’m sure doing so will be very easy when making payments as a simple as tapping your phone.

    When the technology exists to allow RFID debit cards to work in an identical fashion to RFID credit cards, suggesting that the banks should only offer credit as opposed to debit seems to be nothing but an excuse. I have a hard time defending any banks actions when they are profit driven as opposed to customer driven.

  • Tim

    This is just a small step unfortunately. I still can’t leave my wallet at home and it’s still faster to tap an interac card.

  • William

    Don’t worry. I am with RBC too. But I don’t mind to switch to other banks to use Apple Pay. My loyalty to apple probably trumps loyalty to RBC.

  • Supacon

    Exciting! There is fairly wide deployment of NFC-enabled readers and cards in Canada already, but unfortunately whether they work or not seems pretty hit-or-miss. Hopefully Apple Pay would help speed up the adoption of this.

  • ftheroux

    My CC is with TD, so not a big deal for me if RBC doesn’t join up, My comment was more to the point that RBC is not really much of a technology leader (at least not for mobile).

  • Their app doesn’t have photo chequing yet though.

  • Eric

    True, I do use my VISA more then my debit (unlimited transactions vs 25). But I always pay my balance or don’t spend if i dont have the funds within 30 days.

  • Geoffrey Spencer

    Yet it is more secure to your Apple Pay or Google Wallet because the chip on the cards are always “on” and they do not use tokenization and fingerprint scanner.

  • Jay

    Same

  • Jay

    I suppose thats true,
    Never noticed because I dont deal with checks 😛

  • I can see your point of view 🙂

    But if comparing RBC to TD/CIBC, big blue is lagging behind with their iOS app.

  • Joe Peplowski

    That might be true, but I that most prefer extra convenience over extra security.

  • Al

    RBC has always lead the way with the best online banking.

  • Al

    They have always been the leader in online banking with a superior system to other banks. Just because they dropped the ball on cheque cashing is no reason to be so critical of them. Who the heck deposits cheques anymore, anyway?

  • big_momma

    Lawwwwd have merrrcy on mahhh sowwww.
    imma eat some griiiiits in celebrashown bitchez!!!

  • Jonathan

    CIBC just came out with interac flash bank cards a few weeks ago so they were lagging in that area for a few years now. Hopefully CIBC will be one of the first to join. I think all 3-4 big Canadian Banks should join at the same time.

  • u_wot_m8

    wot a pons…. be appy m8, jus complainin like dere is nuffink in the world make u happy

  • u_wot_m8

    passport m8? u mean passboooh?

  • matt

    I swear to god, at the date that this is going while factoring in apples hate for Canada, middle earth will get apple pay first LOL

  • MGSayah

    …and you might want to add Tangerine Banks’ credit card that is set to be released mid-2015.

  • Albin

    What’s the excitement? Unlike the USA which has thirty year old magnetic strips and carbon paper sign-offs, everybody here has credit and debit cards you can tap on the terminal to pay – quicker than fussing with a phone.

  • Unless you’ve tried Apple Pay, it’s faster than taking out a wallet and credit card. One less step #firstworldproblems

  • Lots of us, myself included, choose to not use credit cards whatsoever. I have only one real credit card left (An Amex) with a low limit for “no other option” transactions, but I rarely use it. With the advent of TD’s Debit Visa I have even LESS need for it as I can now process Visa purchases directly from my bank account.

    If ApplePay allows utilization of the Visa side of my debit card so that in a roundabout way my purchases still come out of my bank account (versus racking up a balance on an otherwise unnecessary credit card) that’ll be fine with me, but here’s the catch – Canadian companies have grown accustomed to the low costs per transaction of debit and abhor the thoughts of people migrating to credit instead as *their* costs are much, MUCH higher. If people shift from debit (at <$0.50 per transaction flat rate for the merchant, with no percentage) to credit (often a fee plus ~3% of the transaction value) don't be surprised to see price creep…as companies WILL pass these fees onto us, the consumers.

  • hon pik tang

    I sure hope Apple release this sooner than March. Can’t wait! Apple Pay will be my emergency way to pay for stuff when I leave my wallet at home by accident.

  • Prodesign

    Someone can have your credit/debit card tap on the payment terminal, but it won’t work for Apple Pay (even your phone was stolen). Only your fingerprint will work. Apple Pay is safest and fastest payment at the present time in the world.

  • Prodesign

    You can use Apple Pay in Canada now, if you have TD America debit/visa card. You can setup your iPhone 6 region at USA and add your TD America debit/visa card into your Passbook.
    Then you can enjoy Apple Pay at most stores at Metrotown shopping mall and enjoy the benefit of 1 US$ = 1.17 CAD$ if you have TD America checking account

  • Rio

    1. Added Security
    2. For most people; using a phone is so much more convenient than using a credit card.

  • Crosseyedmofo

    well yeah, no offence but the article addressing this has been pinned to this websites frontpage since apple pay launched

  • Prodsign

    As a Canadian without any American based credit card but want to experience the benefit of iPhone 6 Apple Pay feature prior to lunching in Canada, the TD America debit/visa is the easiest way to be obtained. Since TD America is the only bank for most Canadian to apply a debit/visa card without SSN.

  • andrewe

    I wouldn’t bet on Tangerine being one of the first, unless Scotiabank is also on that list.

  • andrewe

    I second your prediction. Chase and Amex were only US launch partners with cards in Canada, with TD just coming on board.

  • andrewe

    Actually, there is no “fussing,” no unlocking the phone, no opening an app. You just place your iPhone with a finger on Touch ID.

  • andrewe

    I think you raise the most interesting question about Apple Pay’s launch in Canada. Will Interac debit cards be supported?

    While Apple Pay supports Visa and MasterCard debit cards in US, there are regulatory issues that hold them back in Canada.

    Canadian banks are starting to add the Visa or MasterCard networks to their debit cards — but that’s only for international in-person use, international online use, and limited domestic use online (merchants must explicitly agrees to accept it). This is primarily because the “interchange” fees for these networks are significantly higher than Interac fees, and the federal government has gone to great lengths to protect merchants in Canada — ensuring that they are not forced by Visa and MasterCard to accept both their debit and credit cards.

  • MGSayah

    Even though Scotiabank owns Tangerine, they both operate independent of each other. Tangerine’s slogan is “Forward Banking”, plus they were the first bank in Canada to implement “Photo-Checking”, “PassBook” and “Touch-ID”. They’re ahead of the game in terms of mobile banking when compared to other Canadian banks.

  • andrewe

    I think “photo-chequeing” is a good point. In that way they are ahead of Scotia in a meaningful way.

    I brought up Scotiabank because, as the parent company, they may want to leveraged their current credit card systems for this new Tangerine product.

  • Exactly…with the overwhelming preference of debit vs credit for card based transactions (ESPECIALLY small routine transactions for which Americans may still use cash) in Canada it may severely limit ApplePay here if credit cards are the only payment option in the end.

  • Shane

    And itunes radio too?!??!!…………..sigh

  • Thomas Yoon

    Sorry, but how is it “faster” to tap an interac card? You don’t have to navigate through the interface of Passbook to use Apple Pay; you put your phone up to the terminal and the lock screen populates with your default card. Tapping another card from that point takes just as long as digging through your pockets for an alternate card- in fact, it might just be quicker.

    As for other cards, I just downloaded this app, but I’m super anxious to get home and try it out- Stocard. It just launched not too long ago in Canada, and supports a ton of loyalty cards for Canadian businesses. Perhaps it might be a big step in leaving the wallet at home, I sure know I want to stop carrying mine around.