Swingvy raises $1.1M to give HR staff in Southeast Asia a break from paperwork

 Human resources paperwork is never fun to take care of—especially if it’s literally on paper. Swingvy co-founder Jin Choeh says that in Southeast Asia, many small businesses are still stuck with physical spreadsheets and piles of forms. Swingvy wants to help them with affordable cloud-based software. The South Korea and Malaysia-based startup just raised $1.1 million in seed funding… Read More

Concerts Celebrate Isang Yun, a Musical Bridge Between Asia and Europe

Mr. Yun, a Korean composer who later lived in West Berlin, explored questions of identity. Events this season will mark the centenary of his birth.

Crunch Report | Samsung Vice Chairman Arrested

Samsung’s vice chairman is arrested on bribery charges, Beepi closes down and sells off its operations and reports show that Theranos might be winding down. All this on Crunch Report. Read More

Apple in ‘Early Stages’ of Discussions for Apple Pay in South Korea, Android Pay Likely to Launch First

A few Apple executives have had meetings with South Korean financial authorities, spurring a rumor that the Cupertino company is beginning to make headway in its attempt to launch Apple Pay in the country. Sources speaking with The Korea Herald said that Apple’s legal director and senior counselor met with the country’s financial authorities back in November to discuss Apple Pay, but the company has yet to have another meeting with the government.

As it stands, Android Pay is believed to launch in South Korea ahead of Apple Pay. According to an anonymous source from a local card company, “the technology development with Google for Android Pay is in full swing,” with Google having already partnered with card companies like KB Kookmin, Shinhan, Lotte and Hyundai in order to develop online and offline payment systems.



For Apple, the country’s involvement and work on Apple Pay “is still in an early stage,” potentially due to South Korea’s lack of wide NFC terminal adoption in retail stores. Google is said to be developing an online payments feature for Android Pay that could circumvent the need of an NFC terminal. For Apple Pay to be widely adopted, the company may have to wait for more NFC support — which its mobile wallet requires — in the country.

Apple’s executives recently held a meeting with South Korean financial authorities, a move that can be viewed as the company testing the waters before fully reviewing a potential launch here, sources said Wednesday.

“Apple said they will partner with local credit card companies in the future but did not elaborate on the specific details,” the source said.

To start such a mobile payment service in Korea, the company should have another meeting with the financial authorities to decide whether it will be registered as an electronic financial business operator. Apple is not yet scheduled to have such a meeting with the government.

In participating retail locations and apps, Apple Pay is currently available in the U.S., UK, China, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, France, Hong Kong, Russia, Singapore, Japan, New Zealand, and Spain. Apple previously had trouble introducing another of its services, Apple Music, in South Korea due to the country’s strict copyright laws.

Related Roundup: Apple Pay
Tag: South Korea

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South Korea will increase battery safety regulation in wake of Note 7 fiasco

SAMSUNG CSC Late last month, Samsung continued its prolonged Note 7 apology tour with a global press conference detailing months of internal and third-party research, coupled withplans to increase its safety measures moving forward. While all of that self-humbling seems to have gone a ways toward appeasing a portion of the smartphone-buying public, the company’s home country of South Korea (which… Read More

Pokémon Go Makes a Late Debut in South Korea

Pokémon Go finally launched in South Korea today, almost six months after the popular game’s initial launch.

Developers Niantic had to overcome some unique challenges to bring Pokémons to the hugely lucrative gaming market because of the way the game relies on Google Maps to work.

pokemon-go-apple-watch

Those functions are limited by the government for national security reasons, because the country is technically at war with North Korea, so Niantic had to use publicly available data sources to fill in the gaps.

Last year, some fans of the augmented reality title travelled to Sokcho, close to the border with North Korea, because the city is not classified as South Korean territory in Google Maps, which allowed the game to be played there.

According to The Associate Press, dedicated tour and travel packages were created for gamers to stay in Sokcho, where local businesses and restaurants embraced Pokémon to appeal to gamers, whose annual average gaming spend is said to be the highest in the world.

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Pokémon Go is finally available in South Korea

pokemon-go Many may have stopped playing Pokémon Go, last year’s smash hit mobile game, but fans in Korea are just getting a taste of the action after it launched in their country today.
That’s right, this summer’s sensation is finally (officially) on Korean soil some six months after much of the rest of the world got into the title. The launch in Korea has been a complicated affair… Read More

3 Performances by Sumi Jo, Korean Soprano, Canceled in China

The unexplained cancellations have heightened suspicions that South Korean classical musicians are the latest casualties of political tensions with Beijing.