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Apple Catches Attention Of ACCC Over Westpac App

ACCC chief Rod Sims has indicated that the regulator will be seeking a proper explanation from Apple, after reports the tech company forced WestPac to pull a major feature from its iOS app.

“We will be making contact with both Westpac and Apple to fully understand the facts. These are complex issues but we already have a good base of knowledge,” Mr Sims said.

Speaking to the Australian Financial Review, Sims said that Apple needed to provide more information about why it was preventing rivals from enabling payments on its devices.

Last week, it was reported that Westpac would be pulling its Westpac Keyboard feature – launched in March – pulled from the bank’s official iOS app following pressure from Apple.

The feature allowed iPhone users to send and receive payments using applications like Facebook’s Messenger and WhatsApp.

Apple is currently preparing to launch a payments service in its own iMessage service.

“This is disappointing for us and the thousands of customers who are currently using it. We apologise to our customers for any inconvenience caused and thank them for their continued support,” a Westpac spokesperson said.

The move comes in both the aftermath of the ACCC’s staunch refusal to allow local Australian banks to collectively bargain with Apple over the use of the iPhone’s NFC chip and Westpac’s own move to partner with Samsung and their Samsung Pay service.

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