Company Spotlight

MasterCard Backs Samsung Pay

Samsung has announced its mobile wallet, and MasterCard is on board.

In a press release coinciding with Samsung's unveiling of Samsung Pay at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona on Sunday (March 1), MasterCard revealed that its cardholders will be able to use the Samsung Galaxy S6 to make in-store purchases.

Pointing to the fact that it has long been at the forefront of secure digital transactions, MasterCard stated that its integration with Samsung Pay -- which will be available to U.S. consumers this summer -- will provide Samsung Galaxy S6 users with the enhanced security, benefits and guarantees of digital transactions, including the latest tokenization technology, that MasterCard customers have come to expect. The company noted that the ability to make purchases with MasterCard via Samsung Pay will be in place at both contactless-enabled and most traditional point of sale terminals.

“This is an exciting time for payments,” Ed McLaughlin, MasterCard's chief emerging payments officer, said in the release. “As consumers are increasingly relying on their mobile devices in their everyday lives, we are excited to work with an industry leader like Samsung to deliver new payment options to our cardholders around the world. We have been a pioneer of mobile commerce innovation for years and together we’re delivering a digital payment experience that is both simple and secure.”

“From the start, Samsung’s vision for mobile payments and commerce has been centered on security, wide acceptance, and a simple user experience," added Dr. Injong Rhee, Samsung's executive vice president. "With MasterCard’s tokenization services in conjunction with Samsung’s unique MST (magnetic secure transmission) and NFC technologies, Samsung Pay makes secure contactless mobile payments possible at most NFC or traditional magnetic POS terminals. Samsung’s KNOX security platform and fingerprint authentication make Samsung Pay transactions highly secure and easy to use.”

The use of Samsung Pay by MasterCard consumer debit and credit card holders is made possible by MasterCard Digital Enablement Service (MDES), a system that validates the transaction, correlates the token used with the primary account number (PAN) and forwards it to the issuer for authorization. As noted in the release, Samsung Pay transactions will incorporate additional security features such as fingerprint or passcode payment authorization.

Following the U.S. release of Samsung Pay, MasterCard and Samsung will collaborate to offer the mobile wallet to additional markets throughout the world, including Korea.

Matt Barr, MasterCard's senior vice president of emerging payments in the U.S., described the company's collaboration with Samsung as "an exciting time for mobile payments." He stated that MasterCard was "thrilled to see a player like Samsung, the largest mobile device manufacturer with a rich range of products, to advance the transition to digital, by bringing to market new solutions that deliver safe and secure digital payments."

"By integrating Samsung hardware, software and services alongside the MasterCard Digital Enablement Service," Barr went on to say, "Samsung Pay creates a unique and intuitive mobile payment experience for Samsung Galaxy S6 users."

As for how Samsung Pay fits with MasterCard’s digital strategy, Barr sees it as a seamless addition. "[It] advances MasterCard’s digital strategy and extends the reach for mobile transactions," he said. "MasterCard is working to ensure consumers can securely use their cards when, where and how they want regardless of the device they own or operating system they use. As our industry evolves, MasterCard delivers safe, simple, intuitive platforms and solutions that enable our partners to provide enhanced consumer experiences."

Interested in hearing more about MasterCard, from the company itself, live and in person? Cheryl Guerin, MasterCard's EVP and group head of products and solutions, and Bob Reany, MasterCard's SVP and group head of authentication product strategy, will both be speaking at Innovation Project 2015. Click here to join us on March 18-19.


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The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.

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