Ahead of its much anticipated launch in the US next week, and pitting itself in direct competition with Apple Pay, Samsung released news that its mobile payment service has processed more than $30 million worth of transactions in its first month in South Korea, a level of market adoption that the company said was “beyond our expectations.”
The service, Samsung Pay, competes directly with Apple Pay and Google wallet and a group of major US retailers’ CurrentC. Unlike those rivals, however, Samsung’s technology is designed to work even with credit card readers that haven’t yet adopted next-generation NFC technology.
That is to say, Samsung Pay can, in theory, work in far more situations than Apple Pay or any of its rivals – especially since American retailers have been slow to adopt NFC as the EMV reterminalization continues at a snails pace.
Samsung said in its statement that it has processed more than 1.5 million total transactions so far, with about 10% of consumers who have used Samsung Pay using it every day.
For Samsung, the new payment service reflects continued efforts to break through with more software and services that can set its devices apart in an increasingly crowded high-end handset market. It’s also a key test of the company’s ability to successfully integrate a startup into its sprawling bureaucracy. Samsung jumped into the mobile payment fray through an acquisition earlier this year, of LoopPay.
Apple hasn’t yet said how many transactions it has processed, or offered any metrics on adoption, though it has touted its wide availability in the US and Europe.