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Apple Pay, Samsung Pay Ink Deals with China’s UnionPay

Apple and Samsung  execs have been busy lately, with both companies announcing deals with China bankcard association UnionPay to launch their mobile payment products in the world’s most populated country.

Both Apple Pay and Samsung Pay hope to have their services up and running in the country in time for the Chinese New Year on February 8, according to The Verge.

“China is an extremely important market for Apple, and with China UnionPay and support from 15 of China’s leading banks, users will soon have a convenient, private and secure payment experience,” Eddy Cue, Apple’s head of Internet software and services, said in a press release.

UnionPay China Mobile Payments

Samsung, of course, said pretty much the same thing a short while later. “The collaboration with China UnionPay, coupled with the support from major UnionPay partner banks in China, will bring this secure and easy-to-use mobile payment solution to more Samsung mobile users,” said Injong Rhee, the global chief of Samsung Pay, in its press release.

Apple Pay has been used in the US since 2014, while Samsung Pay only launched in America in September, CNET notes. China, of course, represents a much bigger financial opportunity for both companies. Apple brought in $12.5 billion in revenue there during its fourth quarter.

It’s unlikely that either service will become as popular Alipay, which had $130 billion in mobile transactions in 2013 and is aligned with Chinese internet behemoth Alibaba, according to Quartz. Still, Apple and Samsung hope to pick up a piece of the mobile payment marketplace in China, which already accounts for 9 trillion yuan ($1.4 trillion) in spending and is expected to double in three years.

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