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​NAB adds Google Pay, still no sign of Apple Pay

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(Image: Supplied)

The National Australia Bank (NAB) has announced adding Google Pay to its payments repertoire.

From Wednesday, customers can download the Google Pay app from the PlayStore, add their NAB debit and credit card, and make payments in stores, online, and with Google products.

According to NAB executive general manager of Consumer Lending Angus Gilfillan, the bank is experiencing an increase in customers using mobile payments by around 20 percent every three months.

The number of transactions being made through NAB Pay is also increasing by 35 percent, the bank said.

“We know our customers want to be able to ‘tap and pay’ — it’s fast, easy, and convenient,” Gilfillan said. “Digital wallets and mobile payments is a really exciting part of the banking landscape, and we’re investing in these services for our customers.”

The Google Pay integration follows NAB last month joining the Samsung Pay bandwagon, expanding the range of mobile payment services which also includes NAB Pay, Fitbit and Garmin smartwatches, and the NAB PayTag sticker that can be attached to iOS devices in lieu of Apple Pay.

NAB, alongside the Commonwealth Bank of Australia (CBA), Westpac, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank, continue to eschew the payment service from the iPhone maker, after previously labelling Apple Pay alternatives as being “unrealistic” in the Australian market.

“These alternatives are unrealistic in Australia, which has the world’s highest adoption of contactless NFC card payments and one of the world’s highest iPhone market shares, particularly among customers likely to use mobile payments,” the banks said in March 2017.

“In Australia, potential mobile wallet providers other than Apple are locked out of the established payment infrastructure in respect of the clear majority of relevant customers.”

The outburst formed part of the arguments made by the banking cartel to have regulatory approval to collectively negotiate with third-party mobile providers such as Apple on conditions relating to competition, best practice standards, and efficiency. The group of banks were ultimately denied the chance to collectively negotiate by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

Following that decision, the banks have introduced a range of payment solution alternatives despite their prior derision.

In October, NAB, CBA, and Westpac announced the Beem joint venture to develop a mobile wallet for iOS and Android users.

According to the banks, customers will be able to use the app regardless of which bank they use, including organisations outside of the trio, with the end goal to be creating an “industry-wide payment solution”.

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