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Apple Pay is the first major digital wallet service available in Italy starting today

By Adrian Diaconescu May 17, 2017, 4:00 am

It should perhaps no longer come as a surprise that Apple Pay and Samsung Pay are simultaneously inching closer to global ubiquity, as the former today makes its official debut in Italy, mere hours after the latter finally expanded to British shores.

Italy, of course, hasn’t welcomed either Samsung or Google’s Android-supporting digital wallet solutions, though it is one of several strongly rumored countries where the NFC and MST-enabled mobile payment app is expected by the end of the year, alongside Taiwan, Poland, Indonesia, Netherlands and Mexico.

For its part, Apple Pay checks the third market off its world domination list in 2017, following Ireland and Taiwan, and bringing the grand total to 16, including nations as diverse as Russia, Japan, France, China, Australia and, of course, the US and UK.

More than the number of backing countries however, it’s the local support of financial institutions and retailers that makes a contactless service popular, convenient and practical. While Cupertino has banking mammoth UniCredit in its corner right off the bat, the other two partners (Boon and Carrefour Banca) are significantly less preeminent.

On the bright side, American Express, CartaBCC, ExpendiaSmart, Fineco Bank, Hype, Mediolanum, N26 and Widiba are all said to join the roster later this year, though the list still doesn’t include major regional banks like Intesa Sanpaolo or BPM.

You can add Maestro, Mastercard, VISA and V Pay cards to the Apple Pay platform on your compatible iPhone, Apple Watch, iPad or Mac, and make quick and secure payments in Auchan, Carrefour, H&M, Leroy Merlin, Lidl, MediaWorld or Sephora stores, as well as online on Deliveroo, EasyJet, ePrice, Saldi Privati and many more.

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