China's central bank has launched its CBDC wallet app on the Android and Apple app stores as it gears up for the forthcoming Winter Olympics.
In development since 2014, the Digital Yuan wallet has undergone extensive field testing across the country, with the pilot run handling transactions worth $5.34 billion as of June 2021. The central bank states that the CBDC had been used for over 70 million payments across more than 1.3 million scenario.
The wallet app has so far been available on an invitiation-only basis, but its arrival on the app stores signals the central bank's determination to seed the technology across the population ahead of the showcase Winter Olympic games in Shanghai next month when it will compete for traction against the dominant commercial payment apps from Ant Group and Tencent.
Nonetheless, the People's Republic continues to tread cautiously, wih the app store listing noting that the e-CNY app is still in a research and development pilot phase and is only available to selected users through supported institutions that provide services, including major domestic banks.