Date: Wednesday, September 7th, 2016, 05:48
Category: Apple Pay, Hardware, iPhone, Rumor
Apple Pay may be en route to Japan with a little help from Sony.
The current rumor has it that Apple has partnered with Sony to bring its Apple Pay service to Japan. As has been previously rumored, Apple will make future versions of the iPhone compatible with Sony’s FeliCa technology to allow Japanese citizens to use Apple Pay for contactless payments at FeliCa-compatible terminals.
FeliCa is Sony’s tap-to-pay format, which has been widely adopted in Japan. It’s used to access the country’s railway and bus system, and it’s able to store e-money that can be used at vending machines, cafes, and other locations equipped with FeliCa systems. FeliCa is able to process transactions in a fraction of a second, making it suitable for use in a fast-paced transit environment.
Through the partnership, users should be able to store train tickets and other information on their iPhones, allowing them to pay by waving their handsets at assorted terminals. The technology has also been proposed to supplement and/or replace security key cards. Foreign travelers may be able to use foreign iPhones to make payments as well.
The new iPhone is expected to be equipped with the technology needed to allow it to interface with FeliCa payment terminals. Even so, Apple Pay is not expected to launch until Japan until next year, when a gradual rollout is expected.
Apple still needs to negotiate fees with financial institutions in Japan and establish deals with retailers and service providers that use the FeliCa readers, a process that will take some time.
Apple Pay has presently been released in the United States, United Kingdom, China, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, Hong Kong, France, and Singapore having stated that Apple is “working rapidly” to expand the service to additional countries in Asia and Europe.
Stay tuned for additional details as they become available.