Samsung Pay launched in South Korea: What is it and how does it work?

Samsung Pay has just launched in South Korea, as the electronics giant begins to roll out its Apple Pay rival around the world. The launch coincides with the South Korean release dates of the Galaxy S6 Edge+ and Galaxy Note 5 – both of which are compatible with Samsung Pay.

Samsung unveiled the release dates for the payment service at its annual Unpacked event on 13 August; South Korea is the first country to get Samsung Pay, and will be joined by the US on 28 September.

Although Samsung has revealed that the UK will be the first country in Europe to get Samsung Pay, it hasn’t yet announced a date for the launch. 

What is Samsung Pay?

Samsung Pay is a new payment system developed by the company, which works much like Apple Pay, and is currently available on the following Samsung phones:

  • Samsung Galaxy S6

  • Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge

  • Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 5

As with Apple Pay, Samsung Pay’s payment service lets users create a virtual wallet and wirelessly pay for goods using their debit, credit and prepaid cards – using just their smartphone. Samsung will release the Pay service in the US this summer, but says the UK will be the first country in Europe to receive Samsung Pay. The service should be available all over the continent before the end of the year.

Samsung’s payment service adheres to the same £20 in-store spending cap as Apple Pay, but that figure will increase to £30 once the limit rises in September.

Samsung Pay: How does it work?

To make a transaction, users must first upload details of their chosen debit or credit card to their phone. Once a card is stored, making a transaction is as easy as placing a Samsung Pay phone over a compatible payment terminal. For security purposes, Samsung Pay also contains three layers of extra security to keep your card details safe.

  1. Samsung Pay uses a fingerprint scanner for biometric identification.
  2. Samsung Pay also uses the company’s KNOX software, a Samsung-designed platform that bolsters the security of the standard Android OS.
  3. Samsung has also teamed up with MasterCard to enable payment tokenisation. This means Samsung Pay can carry out transactions without actually storing card details on the smartphone itself.

Samsung Pay: Where can I use Samsung Pay?

As with Apple Pay, Samsung’s payment service uses the MasterCard Digital Enablement Service (MDES) and near-field communication (NFC) to carry out contactless payments. However, it also features another method of transaction – Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST).

MST technology works by emulating the process of swiping a standard debit or credit card through a payment terminal. By directly beaming the same magnetic information found on traditional debit and credit cards to normal payment machines, Samsung Pay is able to “trick” them into thinking they’re reading a card.

As a result, Samsung’s service will be compatible with more merchants than Apple Pay – particularly in the US, which hasn’t been as fast to implement contactless payment technology.

“This is great news for our customers who can access their cards and make payments using Samsung Pay, and great news for our retailers who won’t have to upgrade their point-of-sale terminals,” said Margaret Keane, president and CEO of Synchrony Financial, the largest provider of private label credit cards in the US. “We look forward to working with Samsung and others to deliver secure mobile payments for our 60 million active accounts.”

Disclaimer: Some pages on this site may include an affiliate link. This does not effect our editorial in any way.

Todays Highlights
How to See Google Search History
how to download photos from google photos