Citibank today said it will soon launch its own competitor to JPMorgan’s Chase Pay which will allow consumers to pay retailers using their smartphones in stores.
The new smartphone-based payment system, dubbed Citi Pay, was built to rival the mobile wallet apps already offered by Apple, Google, Samsung and others.
Citibank is the latest banking giant that try to benefit from the prevalence of smartphones, which many now believe it will one day be consumers’ preferred way to pay for everything.
The bank has decided to introduce its own branded wallet sometime before the end of this year in Singapore, Australia and Mexico. Citi Pay will also launch in the US in early 2017, equipped with online, in-app and tap and pay capabilities.
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While the new offering apparently makes Citibank one of a series of companies trying to become the go-to payment technologies, JPMorgan Chase & Co has the bragging rights as the first America’s top-tier bank to come out with a branded digital wallet.
Both lenders consider their offerings as a digital extension of current card relationship, which pit against digital wallets from Apple, Google and Samsung in vying to replace the swipe of a payment card with the tap of a phone.
The new Citi Pay announced Wednesday is based on MasterCard Inc.’s MasterPass platform, making the wallet available at a massive number of merchants across 33 countries at launch.
Citigroup said that by enrolling in its wallet service, the bank’s customers will be able to make online at MasterPass-accepting merchants using the same online user ID and password that they currently use to manage their existing banking relationship
Commenting on the new product, Barry Rodrigues, head of global digital payments at Citi said: “Whether it is online, on a phone, or at a store, we want Citi customers to have seamless, convenient and fast payment options wherever they go, With more than 100 million customers in the fastest-growing cities in 19 countries, Citi is uniquely positioned to accelerate payment innovation on a global scale.”