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Business

Payment by smartphone spreading widely in China

Convenience stores accept payment via smartphone in China.

The use of smartphones to pay for goods and services is rapidly spreading in China. Online payment services, which have mainly been used to purchase goods from internet shopping sites and pay utility bills, have also become available at brick-and-mortar stores, with the spread of smartphones.

The trend is being driven by two major online payment services -- Alipay, affiliated with Alibaba Group Holding, and WeChay Pay, under Tencent Holdings. The two companies competed intensely over market share for their ride-hailing apps in 2014 by conducting campaigns to provide cashbacks to drivers and users, helping diffuse smartphone payment across China.

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