Tuesday , June 5 2018

Exclusive: Commonwealth Bank is testing new tap to pay features for the Commbank Android app

Exclusive: Commonwealth Bank is currently beta testing a new version of its CommBank app for Android which will make tap and pay features a lot easier to use. While it isn’t Android Pay — which a lot of Commonwealth customers have told us they want — it brings that same ease-of-use to the CommBank app.

We understand that the new version removes the ‘Tap & Pay card PIN’ and replaces it with the following more user-friendly options:

  1. ‘Wake and Tap’ – If you have set up CommBank app to be the default payment app then there is no need to unlock the phone or open the app, you will just have to wake the screen and tap.
  2. ‘Unlock and Tap’ – This is for more security conscious user where you are required to unlock the phone first before you an tap. You don’t need to open the app.
  3. ‘Open CommBank app and Tap’ – You need to open CommBank app, go to Tap & Pay, you will be asked to enter your device credentials again (fingerprint, pattern, pin, etc) before you can see the Tap & Pay section and to tap.

The first two options will allow the CommBank tap and pay service to operate in essentially the same way as Android Pay, which will bring a new level of convenience to Commonwealth customers.

Better news is that this beta test is open to the public! You can visit the CommBank app listing on the Play Store, scroll down, and sign up for the open beta. It shouldn’t take long for your beta access to be given, and then you can download and install the new version and test out new features before everyone else.

Here’s how you’ll be welcomed to the new Tap & Pay setup:

The CommBank app gives you a quick introduction into how you use the new features too:

We’ve tried out the new features this morning, and they’re a great improvement over the previous method of tap and pay. Let us know what you think.

Price: Free

Chris Rowland   Editor and Publisher

Chris has been at the forefront of smartphone reporting in Australia since smartphones were a thing, and has used mobile phones since they came with giant lead-acid batteries that were "transportable" and were carried in a shoulder bag. He saw the transition from AMPS to GSM, loved the Motorola StarTac, and got into Palm technologies in a big way. The arrival some years later of the original iPhone, and then the early Androids, awoke a new interest in mobile technology, and Chris has been writing about it since.

Today, Chris publishes one of Australia's most popular technology websites, Ausdroid. His interests include mobile (of course), as well as connected technology and how it can make all our lives easier.


  1. How excited I was to see that CBA had tap and pay. How dissappointed I am that I can’t use it with my 25 year old credit card. Same visa card for 25 years and it has the best fee schedule – no fees. So for me to stay with current technology after the hundreds of thousands of dollars I have spent through my visa, I have to change to another card type which is probably not accepted in most overseas payment systems. Let’s hope CBA works out a deal with Visa soon.

  2. To use tap and pay, you must have a mastercard, not Visa or a debit card. Previous versions allowed tap and pay using access account.
    CBA has become an inconvenience.

  3. Lots of people complaining about loss of tap and pay functionality on the play store now, and looks like they’ve removed the beta group?

  4. Just tried this and even though my existing Streamline account supported tap and pay on the standard app, with the beta it says “You must have a bank account or credit card to use Tap & Pay”. Seems like there’s always a catch with Commbank…

  5. Glad I saw this; my biggest gripes with Commbank tap and pay are the broken tap and pay default behaviour and the pin requirement that ignores the fact that I have a fingerprint sensor. It is funny that ‘Wake and tap’ is being spruiked as a feature when it’s just fixing the tap and pay default behaviour which has always been broken with Commbank.

  6. Have used it a few times today. Can confirm it works much, much better than the old app.

  7. Tanaka Mazarire

    Ahhhh have geez looks like CBA is pulling a Samsung and not leveraging awesome tools and platforms that already exist and that people want to use.

  8. I don’t understand why Commbank wants to build their own tap to pay when they could just implement Android Pay.

    • Because banks want to retain some level of control and influence in this area. Handing over the reigns to Google, Apple, etc just sets them on a trajectory to future irrelevance. Is it completely unrealistic to think Google, Apple, etc could one day handle people’s money as well? It isn’t. Comm bank is thinking strategically and long term.

      I’d prefer Android Pay support. Definitely. But I’ll still welcome this UX improvement in the meantime. Now excuse me, I’m off to join the beta test.

    • Matthew McQuilty

      The other reason is that the Commbank can also actively advertise to you in their app. If you’re a user of the app you’ll have noticed in the last few months that there is a “Did you know” or a “Have you checked how much you can borrow?” at the bottom of every transaction. Can’t do that in the Android pay app.

  9. Phillip “Molly” Malone

    As a Commbank customer that got an ANZ credit card to use Android pay, while this sounds like a great move in a world without Android Pay, this is a step too little, too late! Just hurry up and support Android Pay!

  10. Could you please share the link or .apk file.. Thanks.

  11. At first the option to just wake the phone and pay seems so unsecured, until I remember that exactly how my credit and debit cards work.

    • … lol. Well said. Don’t need to unlock your phone to use cards from your wallet 😉

    • That’s exactly why that feature should be removed. Don’t we want more security wrapped around things like this?

      At a bare minimum, I think it should be a requirement to at least unlock the phone via PIN, Pattern etc.

  12. I can’t find a beta sign up anywhere on the Play Store. Can you post a link?

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