Apple launched their mobile payment service Apple Pay in China on Thursday (Wednesday night if you’re in the U.S.). China is the fifth country to get the service.
The world’s biggest smart phone market, China, is also Apple’s second biggest source of income. By China Internet Network Information Center, 358 million people in China were using their mobile device to buy products and services by the end of 2015.
Jennifer Bailey, VP of Apple Pay, told Reuters that “We think China could be our biggest Apple Pay market”. Some retailers disagree.
One retailer, who wished not to be named, said, “With 100 percent saturation of local payment systems, nobody in China is clamoring for Apple Pay. Today, everybody has a local payment option on their telephone, so Apple Pay is a solution in need of an issue.”
Apple has 19 of China’s greatest banks on board, so 80% of Chinese debit and credit cards will work with Apple Pay. While China already has a number of mobile payment suppliers, Apple Pay is the one that will work natively with the iPhone.
Apple Pay is a very simple thing to use. The user taps his iPhone against a NFC terminal, holds the fingerprint reader, and payment is received.
There is no application to open and there is no QR code to scan. Given the sheer number of iPhones that exist in China, along with the way that Apple will always be able to give a more seamless method to mobile payments, it’s clear that at least a few people in China will use Apple Pay in the future.