Apple, Google, and Samsung all have their own mobile payment services, so why shouldn’t others? With Mi Pay, Xiaomi is now ready to compete with the likes of Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay.
Of course, the Mi Pay isn’t as widespread as the existing services. For now, it will only be available to customers in China, but considering that Xiaomi wants to expand into other markets with its phones, it wouldn’t be surprising to see Mi Pay also expand into other markets.
A number of banks support Mi Pay at launch, including the Bank of Communications, China Construction Bank, China Merchants Bank, Minsheng Bank, Huaxia Bank, Industrial Bank, and Ping An Bank.
Mi Pay works pretty much the same as the rest of the mobile payment apps out there. It basically uses the phone’s NFC chip to communicate with payment terminals, and while not too many Xiaomi phones currently have an NFC chip, it’s expected that we’ll see more with the feature as time goes on. Currently the Xiaomi Mi 5 has the chip, and we’ll likely see the upcoming Mi Note 2 include the chip too.
It’s certainly an interesting move for the company, and we will have to wait and see if the new service is able to dominate in China against other options currently available. Apple Pay, for example, launched in China earlier this year, with a whopping 3 million cards being added to the service in only two days. Still, Xiaomi has significant reach in China, and could certainly make a dent in the Chinese mobile payments market.