Mobile Payments

What's Next For Apple's International Launch Plans?

Apple Pay is currently available in six countries — and only has limited reach in some of its markets. So what's next?

According to an interview TechCrunch did with Jennifer Bailey, VP of Apple Pay, "[Apple is] working rapidly in Asia and also in Europe, our goal is to have Apple Pay in every significant market Apple is in." This comes after Apple Pay expanded in Singapore, which came with the support of five more major banks.

Outside the U.S., Apple Pay is also in the U.K., Canada, Australia and China. Apple said it has plans to expand into Hong Kong, but there's no clear date set for the launch. According to some unconfirmed reports in the past, it sounds like that next list could also include France, Hong Kong and Brazil.

“We have announced Hong Kong [and], across the [Asia Pacific] region, we’re talking to many partners and banks and evaluating how quickly we can bring Apple Pay to new markets,” Bailey confirmed, but wouldn't elaborate on a timeframe, or which partners or regions were next, specifically.

So how does Apple choose? By looking where Apple already has a major presence, to start, and then where there are high levels of credit and debit cards, along with where contactless payments are popular.

“[But] when we bring Apple Pay to market even when contactless is low it will grow — it was 4 percent in the U.S. but is now 20 percent. We also work with our network partners, where we can utilize integration with Amex and Visa, to go to market quickly," she told TechCrunch.

As for how Apple Pay is growing in China, one of its newest markets, Bailey noted that there were 3 million cards activated within the first three days of launching (previously reported). Beyond that, she noted that Apple is adding a million new users per week worldwide, yet Apple hasn't even publicly disclosed how many users Apple Pay has.

What Bailey would say is that Apple Pay is "seeing incredible user and developer reception."

For now, we'll have to wait and see what's next.

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