“Now more than ever, people are counting on technology to help them make contactless payments, shop, and manage their finances without leaving the house,” said Sang Ahn, vice president and GM of Samsung Pay’s North America service business, in a statement.
Ahn added that over the summer months, Samsung Pay will introduce a tool to help people better manage their financial lives.
Samsung introduced its payments tool in 2015 with MST (Magnetic Secure Transmission) technology as well as Near Field Communication (NFC), a newer technology. NFC works with digital wallets and powers contactless payments. But in some emerging economies, NFC is not supported, making MST important.
Samsung Pay has increasingly grown in popularity, processing more than one billion transactions, almost double compared to 2018. By early 2019, Samsung Pay’s international presence grew to six global regions. By year-end 2019, it expanded into several new countries.
Through collaborations, Samsung Pay launched a rewards program, the first mobile payments platform to do so, the company said. It was also the first platform to introduce a cashback service for online shopping and recently added support for Swipe’s cryptocurrency Visa cards.
Contactless mobile payments are growing worldwide, but the U.S. has seen slow adoption compared to other regions. According to PYMNTS data, between May 2018 and October 2018, more than 79 percent of Chinese smartphone users scanned, tapped, swiped or checked in with their mobile devices at stores’ POS systems to purchase products. That number was about 25 percent for U.S. smartphone users.
Growth is being fueled in part because more retailers are participating. For example, when Apple Pay launched in 2014, it was accepted by just 3 percent of merchants. By 2018, about 50 percent of retailers and restaurants starting accepting Apple Pay.
Today, there are numerous contactless pay options — including retailers like Target and Kohl’s, which both offer their own mobile pay platforms that link barcode- or QR code-based payments to the companies’ branded cards.