The digital currency electronic payment (DC/EP) system for Chinese digital currency was launched in 2014 but started public testing earlier this year. With the latest announcement (the Mate 40 supporting a digital wallet for the token), it seems the project is almost ready to go mainstream. The smartphone will also offer users hardware-level security and dual offline transactions.
In a press conference, the CEO of Huawei, Yu Chengdong, reported that the Huawei Mate 40 is the first smartphone in the world to include a hardware wallet that supports China’s digital currency. Yu Chengdong also highlighted this feature as the next step in the use of digital currency in mobile devices.
Meanwhile, the first news about the collaboration between Huawei and the Digital Currency Research Institute of the People’s Bank of China was reported in November 2019, to help the Institute source for financial technologies that will support the project.
Huawei Mate 40
The Huawei support for the digital currency currently follows a public test run across the country. The People’s Bank of China already distributed over 10 million yuan to 50,000 random participants in Shenzhen to test the DC/EP system. With the digital currency electronic payment system, users can spend the digital currency at any merchant store that supports it or at any point of sale devices that supports the token.
However, it is not yet clear how the DC/EP project will work or how users can convert their bank balances and cash to the digital yuan while using the Mate 40 hardware wallet. It is also still unclear if the Mate 40 smartphones in other regions will support the DC/EP wallet or there will be restrictions in some areas. Moreover, China is not the first state to release a national digital currency. The island nation (Bahamas) already announced the “Sand Dollar” as the first public CBDC in the world.