Apple Pay Now in Russia

Apple Pay is now available to residents of the Russian Federation that use iPhones and Apple Watches. Sberbank and MasterCard (NYSE: MA) are rolling out the payment application in Russia.

Apple Pay debuted in Russia on October 4, TASS reported. The news agency did not say what businesses in Russia would accept the solution. Nor did it say if any financial institutions besides MasterCard or Sberbank would accept it Apple Pay.

Russia is the 10th country in which Apple Pay is accepted, the solution is supposed to be coming to several new countries including Japan this fall, The Verge reported. Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) products are popular in Russia where people are just as willing to line up to buy iPhones as they are in the United States.

Apple is in a hurry to roll its payment app out in more countries because the solution is not widely accepted in the United States. Even though thousands of banks and credit unions in the United States; including almost all big banks, support Apple Pay, many of America’s top retailers refuse to accept it.

Canada’s Big Banks Support Apple Pay

Acceptance of Apple Pay by foreign financial institutions is a lot slower just two new British banks; The Co-operative Bank and Metro Bank, signed up, 9 to 5 Mac reported. Only one new Canadian financial institution, Desjardins; North America’s largest group of credit unions was supporting Apple Pay.

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That is not much of a problem with Canada’s highly centralized banking system. Most Canadians bank with one of a handful of large institutions that cover the entire country. Apple’s website indicates that all of the Big Five; the largest Canadian banks, supports Apple Pay.

Here is a list of Canadian Banks that support Apple Pay:

  • American Express
  • ATB (MasterCard credit cards)
  • Bank of Montreal (Interac debit cards, MasterCard credit cards)
  • Canadian Tire (MasterCard credit cards)
  • CIBC (Interac debit cards, MasterCard and Visa credit cards)
  • Desjardins (Interac debit cards, Visa credit cards)
  • President’s Choice (MasterCard credit cards)
  • RBC—Royal Bank of Canada (Interac debit cards, MasterCard and Visa credit cards)
  • Scotiabank (American Express credit cards, Interac debit cards, Visa credit and prepaid cards)
  • Tangerine (MasterCard credit cards)
  • TD (Interac debit cards, Visa credit cards)

Apple Pay coverage has been extended to the British islands of Guernsey, the Isle of Man and Jersey, 9 to Mac also reported. There is also speculation that Apple Pay will soon be available in Taiwan. Apple Pay is already available in the People’s Republic of China.

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Coming soon gone From Apple Pay Website

Interestingly enough the “coming soon” list has been removed from the Apple Pay web page. Instead Apple is only listing the stores that actually accept Apple Pay right now. I imagine that occurred because of all the stores on the coming soon list that never actually adopted Apple Pay.

As of October 5, 2016, the latest version of the list only contained just two new brand names, the Corner Store a chain of convenience stores and Lucky California a grocer. Lucky operates one supermarket in Daly City, a San Francisco suburb. Interestingly enough Kroger; which has refused to accept Apple Pay, is an investor in Lucky.

It looks as if expanding Apple Pay’s reach is easier than getting people to actually use it or retailers to accept it.