Apple users rejoice, thanks to the software update released today, you can now swipe your Apple iPhone or iWatch to use public transport within Shanghai, according to a report by The Paper.
When Apple released iOS 11.3 and Watch OS 4.3 this morning, a number of improvements were included like battery health management, AR technology and additional emoji options. That being said, the highlight of the update is the long-overdue function which turns your iPhone into an IC card.
To gain access to this new function, users can go to their iPhone’s wallet and add the new ‘traffic card’ option, according to their region (the function is currently exclusive to Shanghai and Beijing users). They can either create a new virtual card or transfer funds from their physical card. Both processes require a refundable service charge of RMB20.
Image via The Paper
The best feature of the new service is that commuters can scan their phones the same way as an IC card. There is no need to connect to the Internet, us Bluetooth or open an App. The whole process can be done while the phone is still locked.
Image via The Paper
As revolutionary as this may seem, this isn’t the first attempt by a company to replace traffic cards. Back in 2016, Xiaomi, one of the leading smartphone manufacturers in China, launched their Mi-Pay service, which supports credit and public transportation cards. In addition, two months ago, Shanghai Metro commenced their QR code payment at turnstiles. Apple users have been anticipating this function for quite a while, following the 2016 launch of Apple Pay in China. And finally, the long wait is over.
Image via Sina
Many people are welcoming the new function. “It’s high time to get rid of the QR code payment app. The whole system is troublesome,” cheers one netizen from Toutiao. Others, however, find the service charge quite senseless and frustrating. “Why on earth should I pay the RMB20 fee? I’d rather stick to the QR payment. At least I can still enjoy the daily bonus,” argues one netizen from Netease.
By now, it still remains to be seen which payment option is better. However, one thing’s for sure, as we continue our march towards a cashless society, more cutting-edge technology will emerge to make our lives a lot easier.
[Title image via Kankanews]