Apple has launched Apple Pay in Singapore today, making it the second country in Asia after China to get the digital payment service.
Apple Pay lets customers pay for physical and digital goods using their iPhone, iPad or Apple watch, but it is initially somewhat limited in Singapore. That’s because it is only open to American Express credit card holders first. Apple said in a statement that “credit and debit cards from Singapore’s most popular banks, including DBS, UOB and Standard Chartered will work with Apple Pay in the coming months” — that’ll be thanks to support for Visa which is listed as “coming soon” on the Apple Pay Singapore website.
Singapore is one of the world’s most advanced payment nations, with cashless payments popular among the mainstream thanks to government initiatives and programs from banks. But some analysts believe that, even here, there will be a learning curve before wide adoption occurs.
“I think that consumer adoption of Apple Pay will be slower than expected in Singapore. The use of contactless card payments is increasing in Singapore, and consumers are comfortable with using it. While there are still significant barriers to consumer adoption of digital wallets today, it will take time before these wallets become more convenient for customers and as customers realize the benefits and additional value that digital wallets bring,” Forrester researcher Zhi Ying Ng said in a statement.
Apple Pay is also supported in the U.S., Canada, Australia, the U.K. and China.
Beyond becoming Apple Pay’s second market in Asia, Singapore will become the first country in Southeast Asia to get an official Apple Store. The company last year confirmed it has plans to add the store, while adding that its operations in the country will be powered entirely by renewable energy.