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I'm going on a trip to Japan soon and the announcement that as of iOS 10.x there's support for Apple Pay in the country is great news!

However, I also understand that a lot of the NFC / contactless payment technology there is based on the Felica standard / Suica cards hence the question: how widely supported is Apple Pay in Japan?

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Note: I am an Android user so this is not first-hand knowledge.

Per Apple's Japanese Apple Pay page, Apple Pay can be used at all stores where Suica can be used, which is virtually all stores that accept contactless payments in the first place (i.e., you are extremely unlikely to encounter a store that displays one of the other four logos but not the Suica one; the only one I know is my local pharmacy). For reference, however, the five logos to look for are the following:

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In order to use the Suica payment feature, you need to install the Suica app and set it up as described here. Note that only iPhone 8 and above (as well as iPhone 7/7+ sold in Japan) can be used to pay in stores. For Apple Watch owners, Series 3 and Japan-sold Series 2 can be used as well.

  • Is this true for international iPhones with Apple Pay as well? The one which doesn't have the Felica module present in the Japanese version. – Ankur Banerjee May 12 '18 at 13:06
  • @AnkurBanerjee Depends on the iPhone model; see edit. – fkraiem May 12 '18 at 13:16
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    I am afraid it's more complicated than that. Even the iPhone has the FeliCa secure element at manufacture, it could still be disabled by iOS by geo-blocking. On the other hand, LAWSON, the convenient store, has remarked that "Overseas Apple Pay device is not available". – KH.Lee May 13 '18 at 6:43
  • @KH.Lee I do not have a recent iPhone but it seems you just need to changeyour "Region" setting to "Japan"... – fkraiem May 13 '18 at 8:31
  • The reason for this is, originally only iPhones made for the Japanese market had the FeliCa + RFD chipset ( iPhone 7 and up ). When they say Apple pay on the Apple website, they're talking about the iPhones in Japan. I don't know if this also applies for recent iPhones but it would appear that iPhone 8 and up have both RFD and Felica worldwide. – Armstrongest May 16 '18 at 18:42

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