Money isn’t what we think of it anymore, the times have definitely changed. For the longest time, money came in the form of bills and coins that were stuffed in our wallets – ready and willing to be dispensed at our leisure. However, today’s modern day smartphones are redefining how we pay for goods, products, and services.
We all hate it when we leave the house without our wallet or purse on us, just because of the inconvenience of not being able to pay for stuff. We’re not sure about some of you folks, but we’re more likely to remember bringing our smartphone before heading out the door to our destination; it’s just instinctual. And from the looks of it all, smartphones are rapidly being used for payments – both in-store and online.
At the moment, there are three notable mobile payment systems dominating the scene right now. While it’s arguable to say which of the three has the largest adoption rate amongst consumers, it’s undeniably clear that mobile payments are the future. Over on the Android side, two options are available – Android Pay and Samsung Pay. And on the other side, there’s Apple Pay, which technically was the first to be launched with commercial success.
Google’s current mobile payment system is Android Pay. The premise of Android Pay is simple! When you log-in to the app on your Android device, which currently supports 70% of the devices out there, you’re given the option to add your payment cards by just simply using the camera to capture the necessary information. Once it’s stored on the device, you can use it to payments at existing points of sale terminals outfitted with NFC (you’ll see the Android Pay logo).
For added security, Android Pay will also leverage the fingerprint sensor in a device to confirm payment within the app. Conversely, those without them, Android Pay resorts to using a passcode to confirm the payment.
The crosstown rival, Apple Pay, has been attributed by many with ushering mobile payments to where it’s at right now. Introduced back in 2014, Apple Pay has gone on to see the widest adoption amongst consumers, which is pretty telling because it shares many of the same technologies and implementations that Android Pay offers. First of all, Apple Pay leverage the NFC contact method to interact and exchange information with contactless points of sale systems.
Using the iOS Wallet app, users are able to copy their credit/debit card data by capturing them with the iPhone’s camera. Once it’s stored on the iPhone, all that’s needed to initiate the process is to place the iPhone in close proximity to the PoS terminal. From there, the transaction is authenticated by using the iPhone’s TouchID fingerprint sensor. As a whole, the process is pretty seamless, just like Android Pay.
Samsung Pay works on NFC terminals, just like Apple and Android Pay. All that’s necessary is to just place the device near the terminal, and the two will interact with one another to complete the transaction.
Where it’s unique, though, is that Samsung Pay alternatively offers Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) – wherein a magnetic coil embedded inside of the Galaxy device generates a dynamic magnetic field. That magnetic field effectively allows it to work with traditional credit/debit card terminals, which contains your payment information for a short period of time. This actually mimics the magnetic strip found on credit/debit cards.
In terms of security with this method, MST’s proximity is roughly no more than 3-inches in distance, so unless someone is right up there next to you, it’s pretty secure. Add to that, the transaction and payment information are not disclosed because it’s kept secured through tokenization, which substitutes the card’s number with a unique alphanumeric identifier that’s also encrypted.
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