Norwegian fintech Vipps asked for help from the European Union in an antitrust fight against Apple.
Rune Garborg, CEO of the company, said that the main purpose of this appeal is for European regulatory authorities to take measures against Apple that would oblige the tech giant to lift any restrictions on access to tap-and-go technology. He also noted that such a solution would ensure a higher level of competitiveness for other firms.
Vipps was a third party at the hearing, during which Apple assured European officials that limited access to mobile wallet technology does not affect competitiveness. These hearings were the last attempt for the company to prove the legality of its actions and not to become the object of various measures of influence, including large fines.
Vipps adheres to the position that the issue of access to mobile wallet technology is crucial. The company justifies this point of view with a high level of popularity of Apple services among residents of Scandinavian countries and a steady increase in the use of mobile payments based on near-field communication (NFC) technology.
Rune Garborg confirms the importance of this technology, noting that in Norway 78% of financial transactions related to the use of cards are carried out through terminals. He called this circumstance a confirmation of the special importance of NFC.
Rune Garborg says that Apple provides NFC only to those banks that have to pay for installing their cards in Apple Pay.
Vipps stated that access to NFC will allow it to expand the geographical area of application of its mobile wallet. This solution, if implemented, will provide the company with the opportunity to actively implement innovative technologies. Another positive result of gaining access to NFC will be the simplification of the process of cross-border financial operations.
Rune Garborg is convinced that in the field of e-commerce, it is necessary to create independent brands with sustainable development and the potential for maximum growth. He also believes that the current trends in this industry indicate that shortly, the dominant position will be with large international brands, and not individual firms that develop relying only on their strength.
Vipps managed to strengthen its business last year. The company has teamed up with two other leading mobile wallets in Northern Europe — MobilePay in Denmark and Pivo in Finland. This partnership has allowed to creation of one of the largest digital banking wallets in the region, which serves more than 11 million users.
As we have reported earlier, German Antitrust Regulator Investigates PayPal.