Alipay charges desktop computer users for online payment
Desktop computer users have been locked out of free payment services by Alipay, China's leading online payment platform, since Tuesday, as the company tries to go mobile.
Mobile users will continue to enjoy free services, widely seen as an attempt to promote Alipay's "mobile wallet".
There is a charge ceiling of 10 yuan (1.63 US dollars) and a floor of 0.5 yuan per payment through desktop computers, based on a rate of 0.1 percent for every transaction, according to Alipay. Previously, users had monthly quotas for free online payment and they were charged 0.5 percent for transactions beyond their quota. The ceiling was 25 yuan.
The "mobile wallet" payment system will be the mainstream of the future, said Zhang Daosheng, public relations manager of Alipay.
China's third-party mobile payments have been booming and hit 334.3 billion yuan in the third quarter, up 173 percent from Q2, according to Enfodesk, a commercial information provider. Alipay scooped about 64.4 percent of that, followed by Lakala, another payment provider, which took about 24.2 percent.
In early August, Tencent's online payment arm, Tenpay, added payment services to the latest version of WeChat, a popular mobile text and voice message application.
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