By Jon Russel for Techcrunch.com
Google is continuing the expansion of Android Pay in Asia Pacific after the mobile payments service went live in Australia today, its most significant launch in the region to date.
Android Pay initially landed in Asia with a launch in Singapore last month, and today it is in Australia, which has a population of around 22 million people. According to data from Kantar, Android represented around 64 percent of smartphones sold between March and May this year, with iOS on 36 percent, so Australia should represent a good sized market for Android Pay. (Singapore, by contrast, is heavily skewed towards iOS and a population of just five million.)
One thing to note about Android Pay’s launch ‘down under’ is that the service has the support of 25 banks but only one of the largest four: ANZ. It does have usual names such as Visa and Mastercard which will provide wider support for eligible Android device owners with credit and debit cards. In an interview with Financial Review, Google said it expects to add more bank partners “later this year.”
Australia is heating up as a market for mobile wallets. Apple launched its payments service there in April, and Samsung followed suit with its rival service last month. In an interview with TechCrunch in May, Jennifer Bailey, VP of Apple Pay, told us that the company is “working rapidly” to expand the service across Asia, Europe and other parts of the world. It looks like Google is racing to do that, too.
First appeared at Techcrunch.com