Apple's recent iOS 16 beta 4 version suggests that the company might finally be bringing Microsoft Edge, Google Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox compatibility to its Apple pay service in the stable version of the OS. MacRumors contributor Steve Moser found that Apple Pay works with Edge and Chrome in the iOS 16 beta 4, and shared his findings on Twitter.
The screenshot read, "Continue with Apple Pay" option on Apple's checkout page when using Edge. Apple Pay only works in Safari on iOS 15 and older, preventing you from using any other browser if you want to pay with Apple Pay when shopping on the Web.
Sharing the screenshots, he wrote, "On the latest iOS 16 beta Apple Pay works in Edge, Chrome and I assume any third party browser. On iOS 15 Apple Pay only works in Safari."
In the follow-up tweet, he stated, "This doesn't work in Edge or Chrome on that latest macOS beta because I assume it requires the third-party render engines to be updated whereas Edge and Chrome on iOS use Safari's render engine."
Although Moser doesn't mention Firefox, other users noticed Apple Pay compatibility with the browser before the release of iOS 16 beta 4, according to a report by The Verge. A post on Reddit from earlier this month shows an option to pay with Apple Pay in iOS 16 beta 2 while using Firefox. Another user on iOS 16 beta 3 says they have the option to pay with Apple Pay on Firefox as well. We're not certain of when Apple started expanding support for Apple Pay, and to which browsers.
Apple Pay still isn't available in the latest macOS beta, as per Moser, this is likely because Chrome, Edge, and Firefox all use Safari's rendering engine, WebKit, on iOS due to Apple's requirements. Third-party browsers are free to use their own engines on macOS, so we might not see support for Apple Pay outside of Safari on Macs anytime soon, according to The Verge.
But Apple's change of heart on iOS might be related to the European Union's plans to crack down on big tech's anticompetitive practices. The Digital Markets Act is set to go into effect in spring 2023, and imposes a set of rules on large companies, like Apple, Meta, and Google, to promote competition with smaller entities.
A draft of the new legislation obtained by The Register specifically goes after companies that force app developers to use their own rendering engine. While this change could be an indication that Apple's at least attempting to bend to the upcoming rules, the company isn't likely to go down without a fight — it incurred millions in fees before complying with the Netherlands' rules on in-app payment systems in Dutch dating apps.
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