Apple offering new interest-free payment plan in China

china apple store web

Last week, Tim Cook made it clear that Apple intends to beef up its presence in China. The CEO said that although the country is only its second largest market right now (behind the US), it will soon be number one.

With that, comes a report today that Apple has introduced a new interest-free installment payment option to its web store in China as a way of enticing potential customers that may not have enough cash on-hand…

Tech Web (via The Next Web) reports:

“Zhang Yong (Reporter) Apple’s official website has quietly launched the installment plan, can apply for installment services reach more than 300 yuan to buy any products at the Apple Store online store.Currently, only China Merchants Bank credit card users can apply for installment payment service orders ceiling of $3 million, a payment can be divided into 3-24.”

For 1, 3, 6 and 12 payment installment options, there’s no interest. But the 18-payment option comes with 6.5%, and the 24 with 8.5%. And as aforementioned, they’re only available for China Merchants Bank customers.

Apple has been very active in China as of late. It just launched its iPhone 5 and Wi-Fi version of its new iPad mini. Tim Cook recently said that the Cellular version of the mini will hit the country by the end of January.

Also worth noting is the fact that Tim Cook met with China Mobile’s Xi Guohua last week, a good sign that a future partnership between the two is in the works, which would substantially boost Apple’s China business.