While Australia is known as 'the land Down Under' for its position in the southern hemisphere, it is also known as a market of early technology adopting. Therefore, it was with great enthusiasm that Samsung Electronics Australia today launched their mobile payment service, Samsung Pay, allowing Australian consumers and businesses a fast, convenient, and secure way to transact sales. While Apple Pay is already in Australia, it requires specialized equipment that many businesses are not willing to purchase. With Samsung Pay, a customer can make a purchase at any retailer that accepts 'tap and pay' and most others that have the old card swiping equipment – this opens up many possibilities to which Australian businesses and banks seem to be welcoming.
Samsung Pay is starting today and is available for use on select Samsung compatible smartphones – the Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy S6 Edge+, Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S7, and Galaxy S7 Edge – with launch partners of American Express and Citibank. American Express has been at the forefront of Samsung Pay according to Vice President Payment Consulting Group, American Express JAPA, Nick Alexander. He says it is another way that American Express can provide their card members with the latest technology and convenience – speeding up the payment process and allowing their customers to earn rewards when they pay by phone. Citi Global Consumer Bank, Australia, Managing Director of Cards and Consumer Lending, Alan Machet agrees that by allowing their customers to pay with their smartphones, it provides a fast and secure method for their globally-minded customers.
Samsung says that Samsung Pay has the potential to do more than offer Australians the ability to make payments – they are looking at being an integral part of major retailers to government departments to ticketing companies. Samsung Pay uses the Near Field Communication (NFC) method for paying, like Android Pay, but adds the option of paying with a proprietary technology called Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST). MST is what allows Samsung Pay to be used at small, 'ma and pa' stores that have only the old card swipe mechanism – not the newer 'tap and pay.' MST technology also enables partners with loyalty, gift, and transit cards to use those with Samsung Pay.
The arrival of Samsung Pay in Australia follows successful launches in South Korea, the US, China, and Spain. Elle Kim, of Samsung, said that in just the first six months of the South Korea and US launching they have surpassed more than 5 million registered users and have processed more than US$1 billion in South Korean alone. They look forward to this in Australia, where contactless payments are in high demand.