Taiwan Business in Brief – April 2017

APPLE PAY — The Apple Pay payment app is now available in Taiwan, with Google Pay and Samsung Pay reportedly on the way. Photo: CNA

Apple Pay Launches Service in Taiwan

Apple Pay became available to users in Taiwan as of 7 a.m. on March 29, with seven local banks coming forward to support the online payment app and a number of businesses leaping to capitalize on the system. The payment app allows consumers with an iPhone 6 or more advanced device to use their phone for contactless payment. Seven local banks – Cathay United, CTBC, E.SUN, Standard Chartered, Taipei Fubon, Taishin International, and Union Bank of Taiwan – are allowing their credit cards to be used with the service.

A number of department stores, hypermarts, and convenience store chains will now accept the payment app, which can be used on numerous Apple mobile devices. Apple Pay joins a number of other “e-wallet” services available in Taiwan, including All Pay, Line Pay, GOMAJI, and JKOS Pay, while Google Pay and Samsung Pay have reportedly both been approved by Taiwan’s Financial Supervisory Commission and will likely launch in May.

MediaTek Hires Former TSMC CEO

Fabless semiconductor design firm MediaTek, the largest mobile chip supplier to China, announced March 22 that it had appointed former Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) CEO Rick Tsai as co-chief executive and board member. Tsai, who will assume his role effective July 1, will report directly to MediaTek chairman and CEO Tsai Ming-kai. Rick Tsai had served as TSMC CEO from 2005 to 2009.

MediaTek works closely with TSMC, the world’s largest foundry semiconductor firm, to provide chipset solutions to technology firms around the world. In recent years it has made aggressive moves into China’s mobile-phone industry as well as the next-generation automotive and Internet of Things sectors.

Profits margins have reportedly tightened even as revenues hit record highs of NT$275.51 billion (US$8.98 billion) in 2016, as heightened competition in the China market from U.S. Qualcomm and China’s Spreadtrum Communications has put pressure on prices. In response, MediaTek is reportedly looking to diversify its markets.

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