RBC VP on Apple Pay in Canada: “Major Interest to the Industry”


While Apple Pay is currently only available in the U.S., the mobile payment service has been rumoured to possibly launch in Canada as soon as March. TD Bank’s CIO previously noted they see Apple Pay’s launch here “at least a year away” (TD recently launched Apple Pay support in the USA).

In a recent interview with Market Platform Dynamics CEO Karen Webster (via PYMNTS), RBC’s Executive Vice-President, Digital, Payments and Cards, Linda Mantia, answered some questions about Apple Pay.

Mantia says while Apple Pay’s launch in Canada is “unknown”, she noted “it is of major interest to the industry and a good thing for consumers.” The snippet of the interview about Apple Pay is below in its entirety:

KW: Let’s talk about Apple Pay. What are your views on Apple Pay and its prospects in Canada, and in particular, its business model which takes a percentage of the transaction fee from issuers? How do you think Apple Pay will change the relationship between consumers and their banks and consumers and third parties?

LM: Nearly 40 percent of Canadians use Apple phones and until now we haven’t been able to talk to them about mobile payment. While the launch of Apple Pay is unknown in Canada, it is of major interest to the industry and a good thing for consumers; it provides an easy way to pay with a client’s credit or debit card. The biggest call to action is that all of us issuing banks have, together with Apple and Android, is to try and improve the consistency of the client experience at the point of sale – ubiquity, consistency and predictability matters.

While Mantia doesn’t say much about Apple Pay, it is always interesting to hear the position of Canadian banks on the mobile payment, which will compete directly with their own in-house solutions.

Apple Pay Ecosystem

Apple Pay Ecosystem Tracker via PYMNTS

While the launch of Apple Pay is unknown, it would make sense for the service to debut in Canada timed with the release of Apple Watch, as the wearable is also compatible to make mobile payments along with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.


  • Chrome262

    still not sure if the watch will make the 5s able to work at NFC point of sale.

  • Rob Raymond

    Wasn’t that already confirmed by Apple?

  • Anthony

    If it is released around March i’d assume Canada will be part of the initial launch of Apple Watch. I was skeptical of we would see it the same time as the States but a rumour like this gives hope.

  • Chrome262

    Yeah, but I have heard nothing new from it, hope it stays that way, not planing on getting a 6. maybe and S

  • artikas

    Wow, wow, RBC; take it easy. First get mobile cheque cashing like every other bank and then start talking about technology that isn’t even available yet

  • speedracer99

    Here..Here…I second that motion! RBC claim to be biggest bank in Canada, but last in technology innovation.

  • LudditesRbanks

    It’s actually completely available but tight regulation and control by 5 banks will continue to prevent its availability in Canada for some time.

  • Al

    RBC has always been vastly superior in technology. Yes, they stumbled on the cheque cashing, but that one thing does not make them last in technology.

  • They lost out to CIBC for best online banking. RBC still doesn’t have mobile cheque deposits for their iOS app, which makes it look like a dinosaur compared to others.

  • Al

    I use all major banks for one thing or another. CIBC was, and still is, the furthest behind (not counting Tangerine).
    As many (most?) people rarely receive actual cheques anymore, cheque cashing by iPhone is more of a cool factor than a practical one.