Apple introduced the new iPhones and its mobile payment platform Apple Pay this week, announcing its availability in October. The platform, however, will be limited to the US, at least this year, as the company needs partners in other countries in order to launch it. While we know that Apple is in talks with Visa Europe for a European launch, its Chinese partner is already known: UnionPay will help Apple bring Apple Pay to China, according to a report by Caixin (via MarketWatch).
According to a source familiar with the matter, UnionPay, a state-owned bank-card association, has already inked a deal with the company to let Apple Pay link to its cards, corroborating earlier rumours.
While we’ve seen Apple show how easy it is to pay with Apple Pay, Caixin’s sources say, besides this option, users can opt to enter a secret number to complete their purchase.
The deal between the two parties will reignite competition with rival companies like Alipay, and we will likely see how the NFC solution stands against QR codes, which, by the way, have suffered a setback in China.
Since the number of iPhone users has constantly grown in China, with some help from the China Mobile deal that kicked off in January, the possibility of a successful partnership is very high.