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article imageSamsung Pay sees almost 100m transactions in its first year

By James Walker     Aug 25, 2016 in Technology
Samsung Pay, the South Korean tech giant's mobile payments service, has just reached its one year anniversary. The service has proved to be popular with consumers in the US and Korea and is already very close to passing the 100 million transactions mark.
Samsung Pay has been around for just a year but has become the "most widely accepted" mobile payment system to date, according to a Samsung statement. Samsung Pay has achieved phenomenal growth and has expanded to include seven countries.
Samsung Pay is a digital wallet that allows users to add credit, debit and membership cards to make payments with their phone while in stores. It is supported by over 440 bank issuers. It operates similarly to other digital payments services, such as Apple Pay and Android Pay. Despite appearing to be just another app at launch, it has gained traction, particularly in South Korea but also in the US.
In Samsung's home market, 25 percent of all online transactions are now made using Samsung Pay. Over two trillion won has been transferred using the service in its first year. Samsung attributed the success of the platform to its security and ease of use. You can pay by swiping the screen of a compatible Galaxy smartphone upwards and then scanning your fingerprint.
Three different levels of security are provided to protect your money and authenticate transactions. Samsung Knox, the company's "defense-grade" mobile security platform, verifies every transaction to ensure you have authorised it. You can protect payments with your fingerprint or iris-scanning technology on the new Galaxy Note 7.
"Since its introduction a year ago, Samsung Pay continues to lead mobile payments by providing services that are simple, secure and virtually anywhere," said Injong Rhee, CTO and EVP of Software and Services at Samsung Mobile. "Our ambition to reach a world without wallets continues to draw ever closer, and this strong consumer adoption signals a shift in behavior and demonstrates the continued enthusiasm for a safer, smarter and better mobile wallet."
Samsung Pay is now available on all Samsung's recent mid-range and premium smartphones in South Korea, the US, China, Spain, Singapore, Australia, Puerto Rico and Brazil. The company is rapidly expanding the service to reach more consumers, battling to become the biggest mobile payment provider around.
The market is becoming increasingly competitive though and Samsung Pay's limited availability on select Galaxy devices will hinder it over time. Samsung is relying on the good publicity on the service to drive further adoption, hoping people will buy its smartphones to benefit from the convenience and simplicity that it claims Samsung Pay offers.
Samsung Pay still has a long way to go but its first year success demonstrates the company is still capable of launching new services. It will need to expand into more countries and support more banks and stores to continue growing at its current rate. Despite its success in the US, it's still lagging far behind market leader Apple Pay, which accounts for 75 percent of mobile payments in the country. Apple Pay has been around for two years though and Samsung Pay only one.
There's still no clear winner in the mobile payments war and the playing field won't level out until many more consumers have upgraded to smartphones that support contactless payments. With several rival solutions becoming increasingly established, mobile payments could end up as fragmented as the smartphone platforms they're built on.
More about Samsung, samsung pay, mobile payments, NFC, contactless payments
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