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Apple ‘surprised’ by German law change to open up mobile payments

Apple stock

Apple has condemned moves by German lawmakers to force the tech giant to open up its Apple Pay network to rivals in Germany.

The German parliament passed the rule change as an amendment to an anti-money laundering law that was adopted late on Thursday, and is set to come into effect early next year.

The measure will mean operators of electronic money infrastructure must offer access to rival providers for a reasonable fee.

But today Apple said: “We are surprised at how suddenly this legislation was introduced. We fear that the draft law could be harmful to user friendliness, data protection and the security of financial information.”

Tighter European regulation

The new law highlights a desire for governments in Germany and across Europe for tighter regulation of US big tech firms, who have come under fire for a range of issues from data protection to tax evasion.

Apple Pay, allows customers pay using their iPhones, is a fast growing area of the company’s business, and threatens to undermine traditional banks’ long-standing dominance of global payment systems.

By the end of the year, Apple will have 30.3 million users in the US alone, while Starbucks popular mobile payments app will have 25.2 million users in second place. Google Pay is in third with 12.1 million users, and Samsung is in fourth with 10.8 million users of Samsung Pay, according to the eMarketer report.

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Roger Baird

Roger Baird is News Editor at Finixio. He has worked as a financial journalist for 20 years reporting on companies, capital markets and the UK economy.