Credit cards.

China UnionPay introduces QR payment solution in China and international markets

In order to capture a larger pie of the mobile payments market, China UnionPay and over 40 commercial banks have launched the UnionPay Cloud Quick Pass QR payment system on May 27. The UnionPay Cloud Quick Pass QR payment system allows cardholders to complete their payment via a QR code through the app of any participating bank. The first batch of banks that allow the use of UnionPay QuickPass include Agricultural Bank of China (ABC), Bank of China, China Construction Bank (CCB), Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), Bank of Communications and China Merchants Bank (CMB). Another 60 banks are undergoing testing, and the service will be offered at all major banks by the end of the year.

UnionPay faces tough competition from the existing players when it comes to QR code payment, namely WeChat Pay and Alipay. WeChat Pay (an in-app service from the WeChat app) and Alipay are the two dominant third-party mobile payment services in the Chinese market, capturing more than 90% of the QR payment market, according to an article from Beijing Youth Daily. Both WeChat Pay and Alipay offer additional benefits to users, such as providing free services for businesses and giving out red packets. Moreover, it was discovered that when customers display UnionPay’s QR code for payment, many retailers are unsure how to process the payment, and suggest that customers opt to pay via WeChat Pay or Alipay instead. This shows that as compared to the latter two mobile payment services, UnionPay’s QuickPass QR code payment is not as commonly recognized. Besides, most customers are accustomed to paying via WeChat Pay or Alipay on their mobile phones, despite having a QR code payment option on their mobile banking apps.

Industry experts have commented that the success of this move is dependent on UnionPay’s promotional efforts, continuity and whether consumer habits can be changed to embrace this switch. However, UnionPay mobile QuickPass QR code enjoys an edge over its competitors - security. It has multiple security assurances including dynamic key and tokenization, and hides the authentic card number during payment, thus protecting the cardholder’s privacy and payment information.

UnionPay International also announced the launch of its QuickPass QR code payment system in Hong Kong and Singapore on Tuesday. The first merchants providing this service are three stores of Colourmix at Causeway Bay, Hong Kong, and two stores of BreadTalk in Vivo City and Marina Bay Financial Centre, Singapore, according to a report by Macau Daily Times. Next, UnionPay mobile QuickPass QR code payment will be introduced to travel destinations favoured by Chinese tourists, such as Thailand, Indonesia and Australia. Outside mainland China, mobile QuickPass is accepted at about 500,000 POS terminals across Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Australia, Canada, Russia, the UAE, etc.

In May this year, Mastercard, UnionPay International and Visa introduced a standardized QR code for payments in Thailand, accelerating the country’s transition to a cashless society. Through a readily accessible and secure payment processing option for all stakeholders, the standardized QR code lowers the cost for accepting electronic payments.

About FOMO Pay Pte. Ltd

FOMO Pay is the first authorized WeChat Pay & Baidu Wallet partner in Southeast Asia, and was selected as one of the TOP 100 Asian Companies by E27, TOP 100 Startups by Red Herring Asia, and Top 8 by DBS’ FinTech Accelerator Program. FOMO Pay provides a one-stop solution for local merchants by facilitating payment collection from the China market, including Chinese tourists. This comprises of online/offline Chinese payment modes, such as WeChat Pay, Alipay and Union Pay. FOMO Pay’s business solution serves clients from a wide range of industries, including the telecom, publishing, tourism and hospitality, F&B, education and retail industries.