Chinese search giant Baidu has teamed up with direct lender CITIC aiBank to launch a new “non-physical” card for flash payments.
Baidu launched the “Baidu Flash Payments Card” (百度闪付卡) at a ceremony held in Beijing on 15 August, which it bills as a “next era digital banking card” that was developed by Baidu, CITIC aiBank and China UnionPay.
According to Baidu CEO Robin Li the card is a “digital bank on the Baidu app” which has no physical form, but instead consists solely of a “smart mini-app.”
“This is a classic example of digital banking,” said Li. “The Baidu Flash Payments Card is condensation of financial innovation in the digital era – and a realisation of financial inclusion that is mission driven.”
According to Baidu online application will make a range of digital financial services available to Baidu’s one billion users, including financial inclusion loans, zero-cash wealth management, payment services and daily fee services.
“Services have become increasingly important in the mobile era,” said Baidu vice-president Shen Dou (沈抖)
“Users want to obtain services more quickly than at any time in the past, and because Baidu has infrastructure such as smart mini-apps and hosting pages, which can already provide end-to-end service experiences for customers in the entire mobile ecosystem.”