Samsung announced on Thursday that its mobile payment platform called Samsung Pay will come to the US on September 28.
And from the looks of it, it could have an advantage over Apple Pay for one simple reason.
Samsung Pay works with almost every credit card reader out there because it uses Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) technology, which works in a similar way as the magnetic stripe on the back of your credit card.
“It emulates exactly what happens when you swipe a card,” Will Graylin, CEO of mobile payment company LoopPay that Samsung acquired in February this year told Tech Insider. “Now we’re talking the language of the point of sale.” And by that, Graylin means almost every point of sale out there.
In theory, Samsung Pay should work just about everywhere credit cards are accepted.
Conversely, Apple Pay is talking the language of only a few points of sale because it uses Near-Field Communication (NFC) technology, which a relative minority of payment terminals are equipped to handle. Samsung Pay can also use NFC-equipped terminals.
And there’s no incentive for merchants to upgrade to Apple Pay. For one, it’s extremely costly for merchants to make the upgrade. It’s also not a deal breaker if a customer can’t use Apple Pay at a store because customers can just use a traditional credit card.
To show us how easily Samsung Pay works for both customers and merchants, some Samsung representatives took a bunch of reporters to a Dunkin Doughnuts to buy a banana with Samsung Pay.
Indeed, the payment process with Samsung Pay was faster than the process of getting 15 reporters in and out of a cramped coffee shop.
There are some limitations, however. Samsung Pay won’t work with card readers that require you to enter the card into a slot, like you’d find in ATMs or gas station terminals, at launch. Those slot mechanisms actually require a physical object to push a trigger to activate the terminal. But Samsung is working with locations that use such terminals, and all it takes is a software update to turn off the trigger requirement.
Also, you can’t make in-app purchases with Samsung Pay at the moment, but Graylin assured Tech Insider that it’s “on the road map.”
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