Apple’s NFC battle to protect iPhone, Apple Watch user’s security

Apple’s next antitrust battle is over contactless payments like Apple Pay. More specifically, this is about access to the iPhone’s and Apple Watch’s NFC chip (near field communications). Currently, iPhone and Apple Watch users must use Apple Pay if they want to pay for something via contactless payment.

Apple Pay

Near Field Communication (NFC) enables devices within a few centimeters of each other to exchange information wirelessly.

Mark Gurman for Bloomberg News:

Apple’s policy means PayPal and Square—as well as financial institutions like Chase, Citi and American Express—can’t launch tap-to-pay iPhone apps with their own features and interface. It also means if they want to access the iPhone user base, they must pay an up-to-0.15% fee for every Apple Pay credit card transaction.

The European Union is now throwing its weight into the fight by making a formal antitrust complaint…

Apple says its insistence on reserving tap-to-pay capabilities for Apple Pay isn’t about money, but rather about privacy and security. The company says that opening up NFC could harm its system and pointed to a report from 2016 that said NFC access on Android has been compromised by hackers.

It’s hard to believe that the user experience and security are the only elements being considered here, though. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook said during the Epic Games trial that even if Apple were to open up its payment system, the company would still ask developers to pay a commission retroactively.

MacDailyNews Take: This is Apple’s platform. It cost blood, treasure, sweat, and tears to build it and it costs significant investments to maintain, innovate, and grow the platform. Apple’s operating systems and first-party apps are provided to users for free. Revenue therefore is derived from the commerce that Apple created and continues to enable. If developers don’t want to pay a commission, they don’t have to participate.

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5 Comments

  1. I agree MDN’s thinking here. I am concerned that the EU and the USA will throw the baby out with the bathwater and we all will get more junk mail and assaults on our privacy and financial security. Yes Apple makes money — what a business is supposed to do. BUT APPLE. Is protecting its users too. For that even the developers should be supportive. What company wants to lean that their software was responsible for a data breach or worst — a security breach!

  2. Apple shouldn’t be allowed to do whatever they want just because they built the platform.

    There’s a clear conflict of interest, and Apple is actively preventing competitors from entering the market.

    It has nothing to do with “security”, unless you’re talking about Apple securing their profit.

    1. Indeed. As the owner of my device I can choose to be the security person or to delegate it to whoever I please. Apple has no right to remove that choice.

      1. AppleBS proves once again why he bought an inferior Samsung A53 and wants his iPhone to work just like it.

        Apple BS is like one of those wanton fools who moves from California to Texas because of all the woke madness and high taxation, but then, like a brainless buffoon, starts agitating to turn Texas blue.

        What AppleBS should do is just fsck the fsck off, permanently.

    2. Time and time again…No, that’s not true. This is a market economy operating on free enterprise principles and anyone and any business is free to come to the market with a competing product. Apple, kudos to them, has delivered a fast, safe payment system using hardware and software that they developed. Plain and simple. Build a bridge and get over it already.

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