Samsung Pay launches in China, competes with Apple

After much hype, Samsung Pay has launched in China where it will compete with rival services such as Apple Pay and Huawei Pay.

Samsung officially launched Samsung Pay in China on Tuesday in alliance with local vendor Union Pay, the company has announced.

The mobile payment will support all credit cards and check cards of Union Pay across mainland China, the South Korean tech giant said.

Samsung Pay currently supports select credit and debit cards of nine major banks in China: China CITIC Bank, China Construction Bank, China Everbright Bank, China Guangfa Bank, China Minsheng Banking Corp Ltd, China Merchants Bank, Hua Xia Bank, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, and Ping An Bank.

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Samsung Pay will eventually include future support for Bank of China, Bank of Beijing, Bank of Communications, China Bohai Bank, Industrial Bank, and Shanghai Pudong Development Bank.

Samsung's recently released Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, Galaxy S6 Edge Plus, and Galaxy Note 5 support the service, and more devices will be added going forward, Samsung said.

The mobile payment market is heating up in China, with Samsung's rollout following the launch of main competitor Apple Pay last month. Local tech giant Huawei also launched its own mobile payment solution earlier this month.

Samsung signed a cooperation with Union Pay last year after launching an NFC payment service in China in 2014. The company said it will strengthen cooperation with Union Pay and local partners to add further services and benefits to using Samsung Pay.

"We are extremely happy to start Samsung Pay services in China in cooperation with Union Pay," said In-jong Rhee, head of R&D team 1 at the firm's mobile division, in a statement. "After launching in Korea and the US, Samsung Pay has been received warmly by consumers and has been successful in usage and transaction volume."

"We will work hard so that the many consumers in China can enjoy Samsung Pay safely, and with ease," he said.

In an interview with ZDNet, Rhee had said that the company's mobile solution will add more and more support for diverse commercial activities going forward.

In South Korea, users of Samsung Pay can now deposit and withdraw money at partnered banks. It can also now be used locally on online shopping cites run by eBay Korea.

In February, Samsung announced that the solution processed $500 million in transactions in South Korea and the US six months after launching.

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