Apple Pay looks to have been a big hit in China, Internet Retailer reporting that three million bank cards were activated in the first two days of the launch. Apple had been expecting big numbers, using a gradual rollout of the service on day one, something not well communicated to cardholders.

In the first two days after the Feb. 18 launch, 3 million consumers linked their bank cards to Apple Pay according to China Merchants Bank, one of 19 Chinese banks involved in the rollout.

It’s an impressive number, but with card processor UnionPay having a monopoly on card processing, a single deal by Apple meant the service is available to a staggering total of 5B cards …


Apple reportedly persuaded banks to sign up by taking a much smaller cut of transaction fees than it does in the US.

Apple’s VP of Apple Pay Jennifer Bailey appeared happy with the numbers, even if her own math appears to need a little work.

I would rate our first-day performance as 1,000, if the full score is 100.

Back in the U.S., Apple Pay will shortly by accepted by fashion retail chain American Apparel. No specific date has been given for the introduction of its new payment terminals.

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