The mobile payments space is big enough for both Google and Samsung, according to the latter company’s president/chief strategy officer.
Samsung’s Young Sohn told Re/code in remarks published Tuesday (June 2), and stemming from his appearance at Rutberg’s “Future: Mobile” conference in San Francisco, that both companies can thrive in the mobile arena despite some overlap.
One clear demarcation between the two tech juggernauts: Samsung Pay and the recently-debuted Android Pay have different technology focuses. Android Pay, the executive noted, is currently available only for NFC readers, and conversely Samsung’s system also works with magnetic stripe cards. Samsung Pay got its berth with the older card technology through its $250 million acquisition of LoopPay. The LoopPay buy has been widely seen as a bid by Samsung to fire a shot across Apple’s bow, by launching an Apple Pay competitor.
Such technological distinction has importance around the globe, said Sohn, noting that payment transitions to NFC will be relatively slower outside of the U.S.
In the meantime, “the pie is big,” Sohn said, and payments represents a trillion dollar market worldwide.
Sohn told Re/code, Samsung has shied from offering services, or even apps, that bump up directly against Google – and that trend will continue, he predicted.
"Some things others do much better,” Sohn told Re/code in an interview. “We should think about not doing that. … We have actually rationalized that quite a bit, as you know.” Noting the competition between the two companies, Sohn remarked that, “We’ll figure something out,” adding that for now customers will have the options presented by both companies at their disposal.
Separately, when asked about Samsung’s flagship Galaxy S6, Sohn was “rather vague” according to Re/code. “Obviously the numbers will come out when we report,” Sohn said onstage during the conference. “Overall it has been well accepted.”
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