May 16, 2019 (China Knowledge) - Five major internet companies from Japan and China join hands in undertaking the goal of standardizing QR codes for smartphone payments in Japan. The Chinese companies involved are Alibaba Group Holding and Tencent Holdings’ WeChat Pay. The remaining companies are Line, online flea marker operator Mercari and mobile carrier NTT Docomo from Japan.
As more people are holding onto smartphone, smartphone payments have grown in popularity. This also triggered many services such as banks, retailers and IT companies to tap on smartphone payments service. However, each service uses its own QR code standard which resulted in participating merchants to bear the woes of installing multiple payment readers or apps separately for each service.
Japan systems developer Digital Garage created a QR that can be used across various services. Docomo has plans to launch it this summer while the others are expected to follow suit this year. A unified QR code is hoped in increasing the number of users.
With Digital Garage’s unified payment platform, merchants will only need to display a QR code on smart devices or in printed paper. When consumers scan the QR code with their smartphones, the service is automatically determined, and the payment will be processed.
The collaboration between the five major companies is the biggest effort so far in Japan.
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