Starting Tuesday, the Royal Bank of Canada and the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, two of Canada's biggest banks, will allow their customers to use Cupertino's mobile payments app, reports the Financial Post. The remaining trio that completes Canada's Big Five — TD, Bank of Montreal, and Scotiabank — are expected to sign on in the coming months.
Although the payments app launched in the US in October 2014, the service was introduced across the border 13 months later, in November. Moreover, only directly issued American Express cards were supported, while the other banks were reluctant to strike a deal with Apple. Many of the key players in Canada's banking sphere were trying to develop their own mobile payments app. However, after much deliberation about preserving client security and client relationships (as well as how "interchange" fees for each transaction will be shared), the banks ditched their personal efforts and have finally reached an agreement with the Silicon Valley behemoth.
For now, other banks like Alberta-based ATB Financial and Canadian Tire Financial Services are also jumping on the Apple Pay bandwagon. Not only can MasterCard and Visa be used, but Tuesday's announcement will also make Canada's major domestic debit card network, Interac, available on Apple Pay, thereby expanding its consumer base.
The payments app is currently available for iPhone 6 and the subsequent generations, as well as the Apple Watch.