Samsung mobile payments take different direction than rivals

The Korean electronics company sees its wallet app as a way to sell its devices, not fee-based revenue generation.

Samsung mobile payments are taking on rivals in the United States by using a different approach from what already exists. The company explained its goal to use the wallet app to sell smartphones over collecting fees.

This is a drastically different perspective on mobile wallets when compared to top rival, Apple.

Apple uses its mobile wallet as a part of its overall ecosystem. That said, Apple Pay, like other smartphone payment apps, is struggling for widespread and mainstream adoption. Meanwhile, its top competition, Samsung mobile payments, is going in a new direction. Samsung Pay is a strategy to encourage consumers to buy the company’s devices.

As such, this move breaks away from the typical mobile wallet model. Usually, mobile payments generate revenue through fees paid by financial partners and/or merchants. In Samsung’s case, it is an added selling feature for smartphones, tablets and other gear.Samsung Mobile Payments - Samsung phone

Samsung mobile payments will not be collecting usage fees from its financial partners.

Conversely, Apple Pay is a mobile wallet that mainly generates income by requiring its partner banks and financial institutions to pay a small charge for every completed transaction. The actual figure has not been publicly released. Equally, some reports have indicated that in the United States, it is a fee of 0.15 percent of the transaction.

On the flip side, Samsung Pay does not require its financial partners to pay a fee for its use. Instead, the electronics company aims to make it appealing to consumers, merchants and banks. That way, it will become widely available for use and will be a selling feature for its devices. This strategy uses the mobile wallet as a sales feature, not a revenue generator unto itself.

According to Samsung Pay global vice president, Elle Kim, “We’re a hardware company, and at the end of the day I think what we’re trying to do is get people who hold (one of) our phones and use it…to just love it more.” It will be interesting to see how the Samsung mobile payments strategy works against the competition.

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