At Long Last, iPhone Users Will Soon be Able to Use Their Phones Instead of The Octopus Card

by July 12, 2019

Octopus cards will soon be usable virtually via an iPhone, according to the city’s e-payments giant. With the iPhone’s Apple Pay, Octopus users would be able to use their phones to pay for travel, or other purchases, or even their Apple Watch.

More details will be shared soon including the exact launch date, reported the South China Morning Post.

SCMP further reported that Francis Fong Po-kiu, the president of the Information Technology Federation, said the system would be made available in Apple’s iOS 13 software for iPhone, and opines that it will come around September.

He also said he learned the smart Octopus functions would be compatible with iPhone 8 or newer models.

Apple users have been calling for this update since the NFC-powered function has been made available on Samsung phones in 2017. Through mobile wallet app Samsung Pay and select Samsung smartphones, Octopus users can transfer the physical card to Samsung Pay and use it on their phones.

The Octopus card is seen as an essential part of the Hong Kong experience for both locals and tourists, and has been a mainstay since 1977. More than 36 million Octopus cards and products are in circulation in Hong Kong, which has a population of about 7.4 million.

While it is primarily known for use on public transport, the Octopus card can also be used everywhere from restaurants, convenience stores, vending machines, and even taxis.

Hong Kong seems to be on a spree in digitising payments for public transportation, with QR payments by Alipay for MTR being slated for next year.

Featured image via U4get on YouTube