One thing you have to know about me is that I really like to adopt technology in its early stages. I was using Android Pay back when it was called Google Wallet and was only accepted in as many places as I can count on my fingers and maybe a couple of toes. I reluctantly migrated to Android Pay from Wallet even though the app forced me to password-protect my phone. (This was before I had a phone with a fingerprint reader. I just didn’t want to deal with unlocking my phone. I’m now spoiled.) I used it where I could, but it was lackluster because there were only so many places that would accept mobile payments, whether it is Android Pay or Apple Pay.
Several months ago, Verizon shipped me out a Samsung Galaxy S7 to try out for a while (best phone I’ve had in a very long time, but more on that later). I had been using an LG before and while life was good, I was excited to try some of the newer features on the S7. I had been reading great things about the phone and was pretty pumped to receive it. The biggest feature that had me so excited was Samsung Pay.
OK, let’s go over what exactly this is… Samsung Pay is *similar* to Android Pay and Apple Pay. The one BIG exception is the method behind the madness. Not only does it use NFC (near-field communication), the same technology as Android and Apple Pay, but it also uses patented MST (magnetic secure transmission) technology. Basically, this means that you don’t necessarily have to be at a tap-to-pay terminal to use it. It allows you to ‘tap’ at pretty much any machine that has a magnetic stripe reader. Ultimately, you really don’t have to tap as MST creates magnetic signals that are then relayed to the stripe reader in the credit card machine.
Watch this video to get an idea of how it works. This comes from the Samsung Pay website…
This has been a game-changer for me. One of the biggest things is that I can now go places without my wallet. A prime example is the gym. I can sign in with my membership card within the Samsung Pay app. Then, if I need to buy something, I can use Samsung Pay for that, as well. For the most part, Samsung Pay seems to work pretty much wherever I try it. There have been a few exceptions, but overall, it’s been a fantastic, reliable app.
My favorite Samsung Pay story comes from Culver’s, a Midwest fast food chain. I went to use the app and the guy at the counter promptly told me that they didn’t accept mobile payments. I told him that he did and I proceeded to put my phone over top of his magnetic stripe reader on the kiosk. His reaction was priceless. I went back a couple of weeks later and he remembered me. He told me that he went out and bought the Galaxy S7 because of what it could do!