The age of smart payments systems is here and it’s inevitable that we would do a Google Pay vs. Samsung Pay comparison. After all, both of them are available for Android and both offer essentially the same services.
Let’s be honest here, the Google Pay vs. Samsung Pay comparison is going to be very straightforward, as both the services allow you to easily pay using your smartphones. We’ve already discussed Android Pay vs. Apple Pay in a previous article, so today we’re focusing on the main differences between the Android payment systems.
What Are These “Pays”?
To put it into layman’s term, these are basically apps that you install on your smartphone, enter your credit card or bank information, and then use your smartphone to do payments. You’ll have to be physically present to do payments at set counters at your local market; some stores don’t have the option of utilizing these payments though.
Google Pay and Samsung Pay allow you to go completely cashless, or carry very little cash on you. All you need to do is take your smartphone out and make payments, that’s all there is to it. The methods can vary a little bit but the basic concept remains the same across both services.
Google Pay launched around 3 years ago and was previously called Android Pay. There was already a version of payments implemented by Google called Google Wallet, and Android Pay was its natural evolution. However it also remained in service till Google decided to merge them. Google Pay was announced in January of this year and is available across several different regions.
Samsung Pay was initially launched in South Korea in August 2015. It eventually came to the USA a few weeks later and then saw a release in Australia in June 2016. In UK it launched on May 16, 2017. There are a lot of different regions that don’t support Samsung Pay at all, so it is a very limited service as of now.
How Do They Work?
Google Pay uses NFC technology to interact with point-of-sale machines that support NFC technology. This means all you need to do is tap your smartphone on the machine and the payment is done. That’s all there is to it, when it comes to payments. However, you’ll need to register your credit card before starting payments.
This is where Samsung differs a bit, sure it can use NFC technology built-in the smartphone to do payments. But, even if the point-of-sale machine does not support NFC technology, you’ll be able to do payments thanks to MST technology that’s built into the latest Samsung smartphones. MST or magnetic secure transmission interacts directly with the machine and allows you to do payments.
Google Pay VS Samsung Pay
Samsung Pay basically creates a magnetic field that is similar to your credit card and can emulate the swiping motion we usually do with our credit cards. You won’t actually have to do any swiping at all, all you need to do is take your smartphone near to the point-of-sale machine and that’s about it.
There is an MST antenna built into latest Samsung smartphones that can trick the magnetic strip card readers into believing that you are swiping the plastic card. It can do that by creating a magnetic field for a very short amount of duration. This feature is only available in Australia and USA. There are many contactless terminals in the UK, so Samsung says it won’t be needed there.
So this means that Samsung Pay has a very distinct advantage over Google Pay in USA and Australia. However, if you are in the UK, there is no advantage of using Samsung Pay because there are already contactless terminals installed.
When it comes to compatibility, Samsung is at a big disadvantage. Google Pay works with almost any Android smartphone that has NFC built-in. Meanwhile, Samsung Pay is restricted to Samsung devices only. This payment method depends on the popularity of their smartphones, which is significant of course, but it is nowhere near the reach of Android itself.
There are millions of smartphones that are Android and come with NFC technology. Other manufacturers are fast gaining up on Samsung in terms of sales; Chinese companies like Huawei, Oppo, and Xiaomi are selling millions of smartphone each year. And almost all the smartphones they release come with NFC technology.
This means that Google Pay wins when it comes to compatibility.
While the MST technology on Samsung smartphones is remarkable, NFC is becoming rapidly the universal norm. It is already very popular in the UK and other European countries. So, the relevance of MST will dwindle over time as the world adapts NFC technology more and more.
In a couple of years almost every point-of-sale machine will come with NFC technology to make payments easier. Sure, Samsung can also make payments via NFC technology but so can Google Pay, and it is available on more devices overall.
The comparison between Google Pay vs. Samsung Pay becomes a lot easier when we lay down all cards on the table.
- If you have a Samsung device and your country hasn’t caught up on NFC technology yet, Samsung Pay is the obvious choice.
- If you have any Android device that has NFC enabled and your country has a lot of point-of-sale machines that support NFC, then Google Pay is the best choice.
Hopefully this simple Google Pay vs. Samsung Pay comparison will help you choose the best payment method for yourself. Both of them are completely free to use if you have a choice; you can keep them both on your Samsung smartphones. Of course, Google Pay is your only option on non-Samsung smartphones.
What are your personal thoughts on these payment methods? Which one of the services appeals to you the most? Do tell us in the comment section.