Apple to launch Felica-enabled iPhone for Japan - Mobile World Live

Apple to launch Felica-enabled iPhone for Japan

26 AUG 2016
Mobile Payment

Apple is reportedly developing an iPhone for Japan that uses Felica, a contactless  technology developed by Sony that is used for a number of applications including  mass-transit fares.

Apple, which has yet to launch its NFC-based Apple Pay in Japan, is looking to break into the the country’s mobile payments market, which is one of the most sophisticated in the world, with many providers of transit payment cards based on Felica.

According to the Bank of Japan, Felica dominates Japan with an estimated 1.9 million payment terminals, Bloomberg reported. The terminals last year handled JPY4.6 trillion yen ($45.4 billion) in transactions.

In addition to being widely accepted, Sony claims the transaction time on Felica-based terminals is just 0.1 seconds, because the processing is not slowed by bank approval, Cnet reported.

Bloomberg said Apple is working with a number of transit card providers and the payment feature will be available in the next iPhone launched in Japan, which is likely in September.

With Apple’s revenue falling sharply in China, Japan has been a bright spot for the company in Asia. Its sales in Japan last quarter rose 23 per cent to $3.5 billion, representing 8 per cent of its total revenue.

Apple Pay has been launched in only four markets in Asia — Australia, China, Singapore and last week Hong Kong.


Joseph Waring

Joseph Waring joins Mobile World Live as the Asia editor for its new Asia channel. Before joining the GSMA, Joseph was group editor for Telecom Asia for more than ten years. In addition to writing features, news and blogs, he...

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