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Samsung Pay sees strong S. Korea debut, so should its US rivals worry?

By NexChange
FinTech

Within a month of launching in South Korea, Samsung Pay has clocked up 1.5 million transactions worth $30 million, and it will now take on the US market.

It's a strong start. Data released by the company shows that since August 36% of Samsung phone owners used the service and 10% of  those did so every day. Around 60% these purchases were made using the Galaxy Note 5.

Samsung had a home advantage by launching in South Korea first but it's still an impressive debut. How will it stack up against Apple and Android Pay when it enters the US next month?

It is hard to compare performance. Apple Pay has enjoyed an adoption rate of 42% among iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus users, according to Auriemma Consulting Group, but that's with a year-long head start. No data yet exists on Android Pay, which only started rolling out earlier this month.

The biggest curve ball for Android and Apple is likely to be Samsung's payment technology. Both Apple and Android rely on contactless near field communication (NFC) technology - which means merchants need to have an NFC reader installed.

Samsung Pay uses MST technology which means merchants without NFC readers can accept it. Weirdly, the Galaxy S6 can emulate the magnetic strip of a card wirelessly so - Samsung claims - it can work on over 90% of card payment machines.
Photo credit: TechStage 

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