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Samsung Pay and Android Pay Rise to Answer Apple Pay

October 15, 2015

After the highly touted launch of Apple Pay in October 2014, Google and Samsung have returned fire. Google, pioneer of modern mobile payments with Google Wallet in 2011, refocused its efforts, spinning off the app into Android Pay for mobile payments and Google Wallet for peer-to-peer and online payments on September 10. Samsung, on the other hand, launched Samsung Pay for Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, and the Galaxy Note5 on September 28.

Although both look to do accomplish the same task, there are differences in support, payment information transmission, and acceptance. With the future of mobile payments expected to hit $800 billion (14.9% of transactions) by 2019, everyone—whether manufacturer, developer, or store (CurrentC)—is looking to get in on the action.

Samsung Pay

Launch Date: September 22, 2015

Launched with a seven city tour starting October 1 in Austin, TX, Samsung launched its mobile payments platform to the world for its latest phones, the Galaxy S6, S6 Edge, S6 Edge+, and Note 5. Touting increased compatibility (only platform that can work with magnetic stripe (MST), EMV and NFC terminals), increased issuer adoption, and improved security, Samsung Pay promises to provide yet another alternative to Apple in phones and payments.

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Android Pay

Launch Date: September 10, 2015

Google Wallet has been easing mobile payments since 2011, but with the recent acquisitions of Softcard (formerly ISIS), Google dove into the mobile payments market further. Announced at its May I/O Conference, Android Pay launched on September 10. Available for a much wider range of devices (Anything running Android 4.4 or higher with NFC communication), Android Pay will likely come installed on users’ devices and will thus hold a much higher adoption rate.

From here, Android Pay will soon launch cross app payments, allowing users to, for example, book a hotel using Android Pay, combining the e-Commerce opportunity with the in-store payments opportunity.

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Infographic: Comparing the Mobile Payment Platforms

So what are the differences between Android Pay, Samsung Pay, and Apple Pay, as well as two competitors Bitcoin and PayPal? CNN Money recently released an infographic to compare and contrast the five mobile payments leaders in availability, use, operations, security, and pros/cons.

mobile payments leaders infographic

Conclusion: Grabbing the Mobile Pay Market Share

As consumers, issuers, and stores enter the hyperconnected world, the rise of mobile payments depends on six factors, highlighted in a recent WEX Blog:

  • Consumer Readiness
  • Environment
  • Financial Services
  • Infrastructure
  • Mobile Commerce Clusters
  • Regulation

From here, all eyes turn to the next logical step, wearable payments. This is where the iOS/Android war will heat up, and more wearables could vie for consumer attention. Keep up to date with the latest in payments, follow WEX on LinkedIn.

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