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[TOKYO] Alphabet Inc will tie up with Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc on its Android Pay platform, a person with knowledge of the matter said, the latest move by a technology giant to tap Japan's rapidly growing digital payments market.
Starting as early as Japan's autumn, users of certain Android-based mobile phones will be able to use MUFG's debit cards for transactions made through Android Pay, the person said, asking not to be identified because the matter is private. The Nikkei newspaper reported the news earlier Wednesday.
Alphabet spokesman David Marx declined to comment, as did Taiki Kitaura, a spokesman for MUFG's main lending unit.
The tie-up between Google's parent and Japan's largest lender comes after Bloomberg News reported last week that Apple Inc's next iPhones sold in the country may include technology called FeliCa, the mobile tap-to-pay standard developed by Sony Corp that is carried in cards such as the Suica and Pasmo rail passes.
Japan's mobile-payments network has expanded more than seven times since Sept 2007 to 1.9 million terminals in May. That compares with the 1.3 million terminals in the US and 320,000 in the UK, according to research from Let's Talk Payments and the UK Cards Association.