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Apple hoping to bring Apple Pay to more transit systems - report

Apple is aiming at getting Apple Pay into more public transit systems, a report suggested on Tuesday, taking advantage of a number of them adding mobile device payments.

Japanese railway JR East is due to launch Apple Pay later this month through its Suica payment system, which Apple has upgraded the iPhone 7, 7 Plus, and Apple Watch Series 2 to support, Bloomberg noted. Models sold in Japan are equipped with FeliCa-compatible NFC chips, which have long allowed mobile payments on other devices in the country.

Earlier in October, New York commuters got the ability to use Apple Pay with the MTA eTix app. While not as convenient as Suica, which can be swiped at turnstiles, users can still buy scannable e-tickets and passes without having to manually enter their card information.

Until recently, the biggest backer of Apple Pay in the transit sector was Transport for London, which operates the London Underground and other systems in the British capital. Like JR East, people using Apple Pay with TfL don't have to buy a separate ticket or pass first.

Apple's interest in the field likely stems from the sheer volume of transactions involved. JR East alone is thought to handle over 17 million passengers per day, and if even a small portion plan to use iPhones or Apple Watches, it could mean many millions of Apple Pay transactions per week, each of them generating the company a small fee.