Apple's Chinese App Store now accepts UnionPay, the tech giant announced today. According to the press release, UnionPay, which is China's inter-bank and clearing settlement system, has issued a total of over 4.5 billion cards to date. Furthermore, the network extends through all rural areas and cities in China, in addition to being accepted in more than 140 countries around the world.
The news, which comes just over three years since the App Store debuted in the country, has been eagerly anticipated according to Apple:
The ability to buy apps and make purchases using UnionPay cards has been one of the most requested features from our customers in China," said Eddy Cue, Apple's senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. "China is already our second largest market for app downloads, and now we're providing users with an incredibly convenient way to purchase their favorite apps with just one-tap.
This is good news for Chinese iPhone users, as it presumably means Apple Pay, which Apple is working hard on bringing to the Chinese market, should support UnionPay cards from the outset when it launches in the country.