Apple is bringing a new payment method to Germany. In the future, retailers will be able to accept contactless payments via the iPhone. We'll explain how Tap to Pay works.

Apple introduced the Tap to Pay payment function back in 2022. Since then, the feature has been available in Europe, including the Netherlands and Italy. Now Germany is following suit. We'll explain how Tap to Pay works.

How does Apple’s Tap to Pay work?

Contactless payment has become enormously important since the Corona pandemic. Whether with a smartphone, smartwatch or NFC-enabled card – at the supermarket checkout, one of these helpers is usually only held up to the reader.

However, with the introduction of Apple's Tap to Pay, the number of retailers offering contactless payment is likely to increase significantly. This is because they only need an iPhone to accept contactless payments. A specially purchased card reader or receiving device is no longer necessary.

Customers can therefore simply pull out their smartphone or smartwatch to pay as usual and use it to pay contactless. The only difference: the receiving device can now also be an iPhone.

However, it does not matter whether the buyer uses an iPhone or Apple Pay. With Tap to Pay, payments from Apple and Google Pay can be accepted, as well as those with NFC-enabled cards.

This is how payments are processed

However, payments via Tap to Pay are not processed by Apple itself. As the US company announced, the payment providers Adyen, Commerz Globalpay, myPOS, Nexi, SumUp and Viva are involved at the start. More are to follow this year. These include Revolut, the Sparkassen-Finanzgruppe and Stripe.

Currently, you can pay with Tap to Pay using credit and debit cards from American Express, Mastercard and Visa, among others. But Girocard should also be possible soon. According to Apple, the Sparkasse banks will provide the corresponding support for this this year.

Tap to Pay: No money transfer between friends

Tap to Pay is designed to make it easier for small and medium-sized merchants to offer electronic payments. Therefore, Tap to Pay is not available for money transfers between private users. So you can't just send your friends money from iPhone to iPhone.

However, Apple has announced this feature for iOS 18. Then it will be possible to send money between iPhones using Tap to Cash. However, the function is initially tied to the “Apple Cash” account, which is only available in the USA – so it cannot be used here either.

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