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Apple Pay & Suica on iPhone/Apple Watch in Japan [consolidated thread]

Apple Pay & Suica on iPhone/Apple Watch in Japan [consolidated thread]

Old Sep 7, 16, 10:40 pm
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Apple Pay & Suica on iPhone/Apple Watch in Japan [consolidated thread]

Apple is adding Felica and Apple Pay support
http://www.apple.com/newsroom/2016/0...-iphone-7.html

I hope they'll also enable this for non-Japanese credit cards and roaming carriers as long as they have Apple Pay setup on iPhone 7.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 1:09 am
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The problem is not Apple the problem is retailers in Japan.

There are *some* locations in Japan which take NFC - like McDonalds in Japan in big cities have NFC (you can tell by the symbol ).

For the most part Felica reigns supreme with the likes of Suica and Edy. Hence why Apple is putting a Felica chip in as it will take years before Japanese retailers adopt NFC widely - hence they are shortcutting their path to market by putting in a Felica chip.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 1:26 am
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Originally Posted by mrploddy View Post
The problem is not Apple the problem is retailers in Japan.
The real problem is that it's an expensive way to pay.... and the retailers have to foot the bill. Most countries have far more cost effective payment methods (even cash can be less expensive when the volumes are there) than paying by credit card, even more so when parties like Apple add to the cost by introducing additional fees.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 1:46 am
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Old Sep 8, 16, 10:17 am
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Just to clarify all the misinformation in the posts.

1. Felica is NFC. There are multiple NFC standards. Felica is one of them. Most hardware supports all of the standards.

2. The NFC chips in the iPhones have always been able to talk Felica. There was never a technical issue. It was purely a commercial decision by Apple not to allow it in order to try to gain competitive advantage for their own payment system.

3. Nearly all of the readers in Japan support all the NFC protocols....not just Felica. The issue is which payment systems the retailers will accept. It has nothing to do with hardware.

4. The main NFC payment systems in Japan are not credit. They are debit/prepaid, and have very low transaction costs.

5. The bad guys are Apple. Low cost secure payment systems are easy. Apple has just been trying to block them so they can rip off the consumer.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 11:05 am
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I figured there had to be something special about FeliCa, though, the same thing that keeps apparently every Android phone with FeliCa from supporting NFC host card emulation (required for Android Pay, so it won't play nice on my phones purchased in Japan even though they're supposed to support NFC).

But at the end of the day, it looks like I might end up moving to iPhone if it means I can have my credit cards *and* my Suica/Edy on the same phone.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 5:45 pm
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Originally Posted by 5khours View Post
Just to clarify all the misinformation in the posts.

1. Felica is NFC. There are multiple NFC standards. Felica is one of them. Most hardware supports all of the standards.

2. The NFC chips in the iPhones have always been able to talk Felica. There was never a technical issue. It was purely a commercial decision by Apple not to allow it in order to try to gain competitive advantage for their own payment system.

3. Nearly all of the readers in Japan support all the NFC protocols....not just Felica. The issue is which payment systems the retailers will accept. It has nothing to do with hardware.

4. The main NFC payment systems in Japan are not credit. They are debit/prepaid, and have very low transaction costs.

5. The bad guys are Apple. Low cost secure payment systems are easy. Apple has just been trying to block them so they can rip off the consumer.
Are you sure you're not spreading misinformation?

My understanding of how FeliCa has been working on (Japan-only) Android phones for years and years now is that there is a hardware component.

At the very least, Apple in the original link is naming hardware:

iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus & Apple Watch Series 2 to Support FeliCa
not software.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 6:13 pm
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Originally Posted by photaco View Post
Are you sure you're not spreading misinformation?
Pretty sure. Have been developing NFC software for 7 or 8 years and have sold thousands of NFC devices to Japanese retailers.

And to be clear. There is a hardware component (NFC chip) on the phone. But it's been there for several years on the iPhone and has always supported the Felica NFC standard. It's just that Apple had it locked down.
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Old Sep 8, 16, 8:30 pm
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One thing that wasn't entirely clear during the event is that, ONLY Japan models (as in sold in Japan) will have the FeliCa chip? in addition to the standard NFC/ApplePay, and they carry different model numbers. You can verify by going to the specs for iPhone 7 in apple.co.jp and apple.com.

This means travellers are out of luck, which is a bummer, as I travel to Japan enough that I want the functionality too.
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Old Sep 9, 16, 12:10 am
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Originally Posted by 5khours View Post
5. The bad guys are Apple. Low cost secure payment systems are easy. Apple has just been trying to block them so they can rip off the consumer.
Eh, JR East isn't blameless here. They charge 1000 yen annually for the existing Mobile Suica for Android and I can't see Apple being on board with that.

Originally Posted by LC USC View Post
One thing that wasn't entirely clear during the event is that, ONLY Japan models (as in sold in Japan) will have the FeliCa chip? in addition to the standard NFC/ApplePay, and they carry different model numbers. You can verify by going to the specs for iPhone 7 in apple.co.jp and apple.com.

This means travellers are out of luck, which is a bummer, as I travel to Japan enough that I want the functionality too.
That and will Suica top-ups work with all foreign credit cards? I don't mind going out and looking for a SIM-free Japan model iPhone if need be, but if it won't top up from my existing credit cards that might be a tough sell.

Originally Posted by 5khours
And to be clear. There is a hardware component (NFC chip) on the phone. But it's been there for several years on the iPhone and has always supported the Felica NFC standard. It's just that Apple had it locked down.
The problem is, why do all makers seem to struggle with this if it was that simple? Like I said, existing Android phones seem to have the same issue- phones seem to be able to support either FeliCa payment or HCE for Android Pay and the like, but not both on the same device.
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Old Sep 9, 16, 12:47 am
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Originally Posted by LC USC View Post
One thing that wasn't entirely clear during the event is that, ONLY Japan models (as in sold in Japan) will have the FeliCa chip? in addition to the standard NFC/ApplePay, and they carry different model numbers. You can verify by going to the specs for iPhone 7 in apple.co.jp and apple.com.

This means travellers are out of luck, which is a bummer, as I travel to Japan enough that I want the functionality too.
Japan models have their own sku
http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/

Previously, China had their own sku. Now Japan has the special outlier model with support for Band 11, 21. Well, at least Apple didn't exclude band 7 on the US/China/HK model like they did with the iPhone SE.

Mobile Suica + foreign card compatible Apple Pay would be the most compelling reason for me to upgrade from the 6 Plus. Hm. Maybe a FeliCa Apple Watch 2 could sync with a non-Japan iPhone 7 or even earlier 6/6s with Apple Pay? That is, if whatever mechanism to sync them is available in the non-Japanese App Store.

ETA: Looks like I'm not the only one wondering about the Apple Watch 2 and older phone support. The specs state it works with iPhone 5 onwards + Apple Watch 2
http://japanese.engadget.com/2016/09...hone-5-felica/
http://www.apple.com/jp/apple-pay/getting-started/
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Last edited by freecia; Sep 9, 16 at 1:12 am
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Old Sep 9, 16, 1:21 am
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Apple Watch 2 Skus also differ?

If you want FeliCa, buy the unit in Japan.

US
Apple Watch Series 2, 38mm Space Gray Aluminum Case with Black Sport Band
Part number: MP0D2LL/A

Japan
Apple Watch Series 2 - 38mmスペースグレイアルミニウムケースとブラックスポーツバンド
製品番号: MP0E2J/A
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Old Sep 9, 16, 7:24 pm
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So anyone wanna be the guinea pig to test the scenario? :P

I don't own nor want an Apple Watch so someone else will have to take one for the team!
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Old Sep 12, 16, 9:07 am
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Still not worth it.

For one, it is only Suica - most people in Japan don't use a JR East train pass so that basically negates the usefulness of it.

Also, my impression is that actual usage of these payment systems (beyond trains and stuff like vending machines at stations) is actually quite low. Lots of places have the terminals but most people don't use them (I regularly do use my PiTaPa at Family Mart though) - the system isn't really convenient (you have to charge the card, then use it when shopping).
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Old Sep 12, 16, 5:37 pm
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Originally Posted by acregal View Post
Still not worth it.

For one, it is only Suica - most people in Japan don't use a JR East train pass so that basically negates the usefulness of it.
It shouldn't matter how many people in Japan use Suica, when interoperation is a thing...

I think you vastly underestimate how many people in Japan will actually be able to use this.
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