Apple's Tap to Pay on iPhone comes to Japan, making it easier than ever for small businesses to accept contactless payments

Wix tap to pay showing two iPhones
(Image credit: Wix)

Japanese small businesses can now take contactless payments more easily so long as they have an iPhone. That's the news after Apple announced that it has started to offer Tap to Pay on iPhone in the country.

The Tap to Pay on iPhone feature allows small businesses to quickly and easily accept contactless payments, including via Apple Pay, using nothing more than a modern iPhone. The feature is already available in numerous other countries and uses NFC technology to complete payments securely.

While Apple Pay is supported, other contactless options such as credit and debit cards as well as other digital wallets also work with Tap to Pay on iPhone, offering more flexibility for businesses. 

Contactless payments

Apple announced the move via a press release, saying that there will be a handful of local merchant apps that support the Tap to Pay on iPhone feature at launch.

Starting today, GMO Financial Gate, Inc.'s stera tap app, Recruit Co., Ltd.'s Air Pay Touch app, and Square's Square POS cashier app will become the first Japanese payment platforms to offer iPhone touch payments to businesses," the press release said via machine translation.

Businesses need nothing more than an iPhone XS or newer, running the latest version of iOS available to it, in order to take advantage of the new contactless payment option. However, Apple does warn that "some contactless payment cards may not be accepted," although it hasn't confirmed which cards they may be or exactly why they may fail when attempting to make a payment. Apple also says that electronic money is not supported "at this time."

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Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.