New Rumor Suggests Apple Pay Will Launch in Sweden Next Week [Updated]

Apple is gearing up to launch Apple Pay in Sweden next week, according to a report by Swedish site MacPro [Google Translate]. The site stated that the first financial partner with Apple Pay in Sweden will be the bank Nordea, and that the two companies will jointly announce the mobile wallet collaboration one week from today, on October 24.


During its third quarter earnings call in August, Apple confirmed that Apple Pay would be expanding to Finland, Denmark, Sweden, and United Arab Emirates before the end of 2017. So far, the mobile payments service hasn't yet appeared in any of these areas, and a rumor about Germany gaining Apple Pay functionality by September has also failed to materialize.

Currently, Apple Pay is available in the United States, United Kingdom, China, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, France, Hong Kong, Russia, Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, Spain, Italy, Taiwan, and Ireland. In a future update to iOS 11, Apple Pay will also gain a new person-to-person payments feature -- Apple Pay Cash -- so that users can transfer money to one another within Messages. This feature will only be available in the U.S. at launch.

Update: MacPro has reported that Finland and Denmark could see the debut of Apple Pay next week as well.


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You Can Now Pay For iTunes and App Store Purchases With Your Phone Bill in Three More Countries

Apple has expanded mobile phone billing to Denmark, Hong Kong, and Sweden, according to an updated support document on its website.


The feature is now supported by the carrier Three in each of the countries, in addition to SmarTone in Hong Kong and Telenor in Sweden.

The payment method enables customers to pay for iTunes Store content, App Store apps, iBooks, and Apple Music subscriptions without needing a debit or credit card, or even a bank account. Instead, purchases are added to a customer's mobile phone bill and paid off at the end of the month.

Mobile phone billing is already available to customers of select carriers in Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Apple's support document explains how to set up mobile phone billing in the iTunes Store on both iPhone and iPad and Mac and PC.


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Lawyer for Julian Assange’s accuser says he’s ‘violating’ her in the media

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Julian Assange on Wednesday released his account of the events that led to him being accused of rape in Sweden in 2010, earning the ire of the lawyer for his accuser, who said he was “violating” her client in the media.

From the Ecuadorian embassy in London where he remains confined, the WikiLeaks founder leaked the testimony he gave in November to Swedish prosecutors. 

In it, he declares he did not have sex with the woman as she slept — the centre of the accusations against him.

Swedish prosecutors are yet to charge Assange with a crime, and his testimony forms part of a preliminary investigation.  Read more…

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The demise of this Swedish Christmas goat has come early

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LONDON — Alas, even Sweden isn’t safe from the wrath of 2016. 

In our continued coverage of extended metaphors for this tumultuous year, here’s a holiday-themed analogy of well-intentioned calamity.   

The tale starts out quaintly enough. In the Swedish town of Gävle, there is a lovely holiday tradition of erecting a charming goat effigy. 

The structure, complete with red ribbons and twinkling lights, is built in tribute to the Scandinavian Yule Goat, a time-honored symbol of the season. 

The town gathers around the structure to greet the goat on the first day of Advent. According to the BBC, this year (for the goat’s 50th anniversary) around 2.3m kronor (£200,000; $250,000) was spent on its construction and the associated festivities.  Read more…

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