One of the major drawbacks of using third-party browsers on iOS 15 and iPadOS 15 devices is the lack of Apple Pay support. If Apple Pay is their preferred payment method, people who want to make in-browser online payments on e-commerce platforms must use Apple’s Safari browser. Apple Pay users have long been frustrated by the lack of Apple Pay support in browsers other than Safari. However, Apple has finally decided to address this vexing issue, albeit in a limited way.
According to a recent MacRumors report, when the stable versions of iOS 16 and iPadOS 16 are released later this year, Apple may enable Apple Pay support for a select group of third-party browsers. In fact, this feature is already available to some iOS 16 Beta and iPadOS Beta users. While the fact that Apple had begun supporting third-party browsers had been a topic of discussion on several Apple-centric Reddit groups for over a month, a recent tweet by MacRumors’ Steve Mosser brought the topic back into focus.
What browsers are currently supported?
Mosser tweeted a screenshot on July 30 showing how he could use Apple Pay with third-party browsers on a device running the most recent version of iOS 16 Beta. Steve Mosser and a few others confirmed that they could use Apple Pay with third-party browsers such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Mozilla Firefox on iOS 16 Beta and iPadOS Beta. Surprisingly, the feature appears to have been enabled only on the iPhone and tablet versions of these browsers on iOS 16 Beta or iPadOS 16 Beta devices.
Notably, Apple Pay support remains unavailable in MacOS versions of these third-party browsers. According to Mosser, the main reason Apple Pay does not work on macOS versions of third-party browsers is that these browsers use a different rendering engine than Safari. Given that mobile wallet like Apple Pay and Google Pay face stiff competition from contactless cards for in-store transactions, Apple restricting Apple Pay use on online platforms is puzzling.
Notably, including third-party browser support in the beta versions of iOS 16 and iPad 16 does not imply that it will include the feature in the stable versions of these platforms later this year. We can only hope that by the end of 2022, Apple Pay will be browser-independent across all Apple platforms.