Apple is highlighting the Apple Pay card balance feature in the UK today, expanding it to 10 banks and finance companies there.
It’s likely to roll out to other UK brands soon – with EU countries rolling out as well – while the US rollout is likely to be much slower…
apple pay card balance feature
Once activated, the feature displays the available balance in the bank account and card directly below the card in the Wallet app. Here’s how Apple describes it:
A new feature is available to Apple Pay users in the UK, enabling them to connect their accounts to eligible debit and credit cards in Wallet, and easily access their most useful, relevant information – such as their latest debit card balance. Can be viewed and accessed from. – At the time of purchase. This feature empowers users to make more informed purchases, increases their confidence when making transactions, and allows them to view information repeatedly so they have more control when it comes to their finances.
“By enabling users to easily access their most useful account information within Wallet and at the time of their purchases, they can make informed financial decisions and manage their spending,” said Jennifer Bailey, Apple’s vice president of Apple Pay and Apple Wallet. can be better understood and managed.” , “We look forward to working with UK partners under the Open Banking initiative to help users improve their financial health, and provide more ways banks can deepen their relationships with customers.”
Users will be able to see their up-to-date debit card balance in Wallet and when they’re checking out with Apple Pay online or in-app. As users make purchases – whether big or small – they’ll be able to see what’s in their debit card balance so they can quicker and more easily determine if it fits within their budget and spending.
The feature was first launched in beta form in the UK in September, and is currently supported by 10 banks and finance companies.
While most new iOS features launch first in the US, Apple Pay Card Balance takes advantage of a UK law that requires banks to offer something known as Open Banking. It has three components:
- An API that allows third-party apps to access real-time account information
- A more efficient way to pay
- More accurate credit scores through access to live financial data
For example, customers can use a single third-party app to view balances and details of their accounts across multiple banks. This is the API used by the wallet app.
Open Banking is also part of EU law, so it’s likely that this feature will soon be rolled out to other UK banks as well as other European countries.
US rollout likely to be slow
In the US, this feature has always been available for Apple Card, as it is managed through the Wallet app. Furthermore, the rollout will be slow, as the US does not yet have a similar open banking initiative (although it is being discussed).
This means that instead of connecting to a public API, Apple will have to make individual agreements with each bank and card company — or, at least, the financial institutions that own them.
The Discover Credit Card joined the party last month, but Apple hasn’t yet given any indication as to which other cards and accounts we can expect to support the feature. While the Discover Card is mentioned, it’s notable that Apple only added the press release to its UK press site.
Privacy and Security
Of course Apple emphasizes that this feature has a strong focus on privacy and security.
Like Apple Pay, the feature is designed to be private and protect user data.
Before the feature can be enabled users must authenticate through their financial provider’s website or app, as well as give consent for the wallet to connect their accounts to their cards and share their data. User account balance information, transaction history, and other account details are stored on the device, not on Apple servers.
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