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Apple Pay Launches in Ireland, Coming Soon to Italy

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iPhone owners in Ireland, rejoice; according to a new report from 9to5Mac, Apple Pay is coming to the Emerald Isle, allowing users to simply swipe their iPhone, iPad, or Apple Watch to pay for purchases.

The tech giant has launched the payment service in its sixth market in Europe, supporting Irish banking customers with Ulster Bank and KBC as well as Boon, an app and pre-paid card from German fintech Wirecard.

The launch of Apple Pay in Ireland has been three years in the making since it was first revealed at Apple’s iPhone event in September 2014. In that time, the service has launched in the larger markets such as the US, the UK and various other countries around the world.

“The potential of mobile payment is increasing rapidly, largely thanks to the continual development of NFC infrastructure and increasing user acceptance,” said Dr. Markus Braun, the CEO at Wirecard. “This potential forms the foundation of our product. boon will make mobile payment at the point of sale an immediate reality.”

“The solution offers an unparalleled payment experience, from an intuitive user interface to its design and the very highest security standards,” he continues. “The addition of innovative features and business models will help ensure that boon continually grows. We will work with both distributors and cooperative partners to establish boon on a global basis.”

Despite the exciting launch of the service, only two major Irish banks have signed on. Other major Irish banks such as AIB are yet to agree a deal with Apple, despite supporting Android Pay in late 2016. A spokesperson for AIB said that negotiations with Apple are ongoing but there is “nothing to announce at this time.”

With Ireland now onboard, Apple Pay is available at 14 countries around the world: United States, Canada, United Kingdom, France, Ireland, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Australia, China, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, and Singapore.

Apple Pay in Italy is coming soon as well, with support from Boon, UniCredit and Carrefour Banca, according to an updated Apple Pay webpage.

Apple Pay has been in Canada since last year and is supported by Canadian banks RBC, TD, BMO, CIBC, Scotiabank, PC Financial, Tangerine, along with ATB, and American Express. MBNA Canada support is coming later this year.

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