Samsung Pay
Samsung Pay icon.svg
Screenshot of Samsung Pay in Vietnam.jpg
Screenshot of Samsung Pay
Developer(s)Samsung Electronics
Initial releaseAugust 20, 2015; 6 years ago (2015-08-20)
Operating systemAndroid
PlatformSelected Samsung Galaxy smartphones & Gear smartwatches
LicenseProprietary
Websitesamsung.com/global/galaxy/samsung-pay/

Samsung Pay is a mobile payment and digital wallet service by Samsung Electronics that lets users make payments using compatible phones and other Samsung-produced devices. The service supports contactless payments using near-field communications (NFC), but also supports magnetic strip–only payment terminals by incorporating magnetic secure transmission.[1] In India it also supports bill payments.[2]

The service was launched in South Korea on August 20, 2015, and in the United States on September 28 of the same year. In 2016, at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES 2016), the telecommunications company announced that Samsung Pay would be coming soon to a variety of banks in Australia, Brazil, Spain and Singapore.[3]

Service

Samsung Pay was developed from the intellectual property of LoopPay, a crowdfunded startup company that Samsung acquired in February 2015 for an estimated $300m, one of the largest acquisitions made by the firm. The service supports both NFC-based mobile payment systems (which are prioritized when support is detected),[4] as well as those that only support magnetic stripes. This is accomplished via a technology known as magnetic secure transmission (MST), which emulates the swipe of a permanent magnet strip past a reader by generating the near-field magnetic waveform directly. LoopPay's developers stated that because of this design, the technology would work with "nearly 90%" of all point-of-sale units in the United States (which excludes terminals that require the card to be physically inserted into a slot in order to function).[1]

On phones, the Samsung Pay menu is launched by swiping from the bottom of the screen. Different credit, debit and loyalty cards can be loaded into the app, and selected by swiping between them on-screen.[4]

In South Korea, Samsung Pay can be used for online payments[5] and to withdraw money on selected banks' ATMs.[6]

In Mainland China, Samsung Pay supports In-app payments, QR code payments (Alipay, and WeChat Pay) and public transportation cards of Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, and other cities.

In Hong Kong, Samsung Pay can be linked with Octopus cards, called Smart Octopus, to make electronic payments with stored value service for payments in online or offline systems.[7]

In India, Samsung Pay supports Unified Payments Interface (UPI) and BharatQR.[8] It also supports bill payments via the Bharat Bill Payment System (BBPS).[2]

In May 2020, Samsung Pay unveiled Samsung Money by SoFi, a mobile-first money management experience that makes available a cash management account and accompanying Mastercard debit card via the Samsung Pay app, in partnership with fintech company SoFi.[9]

Security

Samsung Pay's security measures are based on Samsung Knox and ARM TrustZone technologies; credit card information is stored in a secure token.[4] Payments must be authenticated using a fingerprint scan or passcode.[10][11]

In August 2016, security researcher Salvador Mendoza disclosed a potential flaw with Samsung Pay, arguing that its security tokens were not sufficiently randomized and could become predictable. He also designed a handheld device that could be used to skim magnetic secure transmission tokens, and another which could spoof magnetic stripes on actual card readers using the token. Samsung responded to the report, stating that "If at any time there is a potential vulnerability, we will act promptly to investigate and resolve the issue".[12]

Samsung Pay will not work with devices whose Knox warranty bit is tripped.

Availability

Global availability of Samsung Pay
Global availability of Samsung Pay

Supported countries

Date

(In chronological Order)

Support for payment cards issued in
August 20, 2015 South Korea South Korea[13]
September 28, 2015 United States United States[13][14]
March 29, 2016 China China[15][16]
June 2, 2016 Spain Spain[17]
June 15, 2016 Australia Australia[18]
June 16, 2016 Singapore Singapore[19]
July 13, 2016 Puerto Rico Puerto Rico[20]
July 19, 2016 Brazil Brazil[21]
September 28, 2016 Russia Russia[22] (Only Mir)[23][note 1]
November 8, 2016 Canada Canada[3][26]
February 24, 2017 Malaysia Malaysia[27]
March 22, 2017 India India[28]
April 27, 2017 Sweden Sweden[29]
United Arab Emirates United Arab Emirates[30]
May 16, 2017 United Kingdom United Kingdom[31]
May 23, 2017 Switzerland Switzerland[32]
Taiwan Taiwan[33]
May 25, 2017 Hong Kong Hong Kong[34]
September 28, 2017 Vietnam Vietnam[35]
November 15, 2017 Belarus Belarus[36]
March 22, 2018 Italy Italy[37][38]
April 26, 2018 France France[39]
August 21, 2018 South Africa South Africa[40][41]
March 23, 2019 Indonesia Indonesia[42]
January 21, 2020 Kazakhstan Kazakhstan[43]
September 20, 2020[citation needed] Kuwait Kuwait[44]
October 28, 2020 Germany Germany[45]

In May 2016, it was reported that Samsung was developing a spin-off of the service known as Samsung Pay Mini. This service will be used for online payments only, and is also being targeted as a multi-platform service.[46]

In January 2017, Samsung has confirmed that Samsung Pay Mini will not only work on its Galaxy devices but on other Android phones as well, as long as they are running Android Lollipop or above and have a screen resolution of 1280 × 720 pixels or higher.[47][48]

In June 2017, Samsung launched Samsung Pay Mini and currently available on Galaxy J7 Max/On Max (in India)[49]

Availability is limited not just on the basis of where the payment card is issued, but also on the basis of the phone's region (CSC) code. Thus a phone made for an unsupported region can never use Samsung Pay even if it physically resides in a supported region and has a local SIM card. The rather unrelated error "Connection error. Unable to connect to Samsung Pay temporarily. Try again later." is how Samsung Pay reports this problem.

In June 2020, Samsung announced a partnership between Samsung Pay, Curve and Mastercard for the launch of Samsung Pay Card in the UK and more EE countries where Curve has customers later in 2020.

From September 2021, Samsung Pay Mini was made available for Galaxy A and Galaxy M series.[50][51]

Unlike other providers like Google Samsung did not fully join the sanctions on Russia after the invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. As Samsung Pay was still partly working Samsung was accused of earning money from "blood business".[52]

Usage within public transport systems

Due to the open nature of the Android platform, some transit cards are only available through other Android-based mobile wallets or via their own apps (e.g. SmarTrip for Google Pay or PASMO for Android). In addition, Samsung Pay does not allow for users in one region to purchase cards for another. Galaxy devices must be purchased from the region their desired transit card hails. For public transport systems where transit cards can be used, passengers can ride with Samsung Pay if such transit or payment cards can be added to Samsung Pay. Here are the scenarios where Tap & Pay mode is available.

Country/Region Scenario Fare Payment Method(s)
Australia[53] All stations of Transport for NSW Debit and credit cards
China mainland[54] All forms of transit and stores that accept Beijing Transit cards Beijing Transit Card
All forms of transit that accept Shanghai Transit cards and selected forms of transit that accept China City Union cards Shanghai Transit Card
All forms of transit that accept China T-Union cards Beijing T-Union Transit Card, Changsha Transit Card, Changzhou Transit Card, Dalian Transit Card, Foshan Transit Card, Guangzhou Transit Card, Nanjing Transit Card, Shanghai T-Union Transit Card, Shenzhen Transit Card, Shijiazhuang Transit Card, Suzhou Transit Card, Xiamen Transit Card, Xi'an Transit Card, Xuzhou Transit Card
France[55] Select forms of transit that accept Navigo Navigo
Hong Kong[56] All forms of transit and stores that accept Octopus Octopus
Italy[57] All stations of Milan Metro Debit and credit cards
All stations of Rome Metro Debit and credit cards
Russia (suspended)[23][58] Select stations of Moscow Metro Troika (previously added cards only, new cards not allowed), debit and credit cards
Singapore[59] All forms of transit and stores that accept SimplyGo SimplyGo, debit and credit cards
South Korea[60] All forms of transit and stores that accept Cashbee Cashbee
All forms of transit and stores that accept T-Money T-Money
Taiwan[61] All forms of transit and stores that accept EasyCard EasyCard
United Kingdom[62] All stations of Transport for London Debit and credit cards
United States[63] All stations of Metropolitan Transportation Authority Debit and credit cards
All stations of TriMet Debit and credit cards
All stations of Chicago Transit Authority Debit and credit cards

In addition to the above scenarios, Samsung Pay can still be used with other non-Tap & Pay readers that accept contactless open loop payment cards, but they will have to be verified beforehand.

Comparison with instant payment

In digital wallet-based payment systems like PayPal, Apple Pay, Alipay, WeChat Pay, etc. users receive immediate notification of the transaction, but funds are transferred at best in the next business day. The settlement time depends on the payment method chosen by the customer, while for instant payment systems, the funds are transferred within seconds or minutes.

Compatible devices

Flagship smartphones

Galaxy S

Galaxy Note

Galaxy Z

Mid-range smartphones

Galaxy A

Galaxy M

Samsung Galaxy M42 5G (also known as Samsung Galaxy A42 5G in other countries)

Galaxy J

Galaxy C and others

Available to Samsung Pay users within Hong Kong, Macau and China.

Smartwatches

See also

References

  1. ^ As of March 2022, Samsung Pay for Mastercard and Visa is disabled in Russia due to international sanctions imposed as part of its response to the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine and due to financial uncertainty in Russia.[24][25]
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