The Samsung Galaxy S7 was, and is still considered a great smartphone. It’s actually been one of my daily drivers for the last year, which is a testament given how frequently I go through phones. The way I look at it, Samsung did set the bar in what we want, a phone that looks premium, that’s water resistant, features wireless charging, and takes amazing photos and videos. While many phones are still playing catch up, at least matching to what the Samsung Galaxy S7 has brought to the table, there’s still a not-so-secret weapon that the Galaxy S8 will surely have that no other phones can come close to offering.

And that’s none other than Samsung Pay. Let that sink in just a bit, mainly because it’s arguably something that you wouldn’t think about, especially given all the other high-tech goodies we anticipate Samsung’s upcoming flagship to package. The rumors and leaks have given us several sneak peeks, but Samsung Pay isn’t something new. In fact, it’s been around since the days of the Galaxy S6 – so the concept isn’t necessarily a new one.

Underappreciated, but extremely reliable

Compared to other mobile payment solutions, Samsung Pay is the most reliable

Thinking about what’s going to be crammed into the Galaxy S8, Samsung Pay is seriously still an underappreciated feature when you think about it. It is without a doubt, the most underrated feature that the S8 will offer on top of everything else. Compared to other mobile payment solutions out there, I find Samsung Pay to be the most reliable, as well as offering one of the broadest support of credit and debit cards.

See also:

Samsung Galaxy S8: all the rumors in one place

March 29, 2017

Nowadays, its success rate is very promising, and significantly higher than say Apple Pay and Android Pay. That’s saying a lot, but having experienced all three solutions, I am consistently amazed by how reliable Samsung Pay works when the other two fail.

Most payment terminals have been outfitted with NFC connectivity, which is used to initiate your payment. However, in the instance that it’s not available, the Galaxy S7 and most likely the S8, will then fall back on their Magnetic Secure Transmission; MST for short. The magnetic coil embedded inside of the S7 generates a dynamic magnetic field, effectively mimicking the magnetic strip found on your credit cards and debit cards. Usually, this is done at terminals that don’t feature the tap-to-pay logos on them.

I’ve tried all sorts of mobile payment solutions, including these electronic credit cards that were being heralded to change the payment landscape a couple of years ago. Take for example the COIN card, which I thought was the godsend a couple of years ago when it first launched as Kickstarter campaign, but it turned out to be the least reliable solution out of the bunch in my experience. And frankly, I hardly use it anymore due to its frustrating unreliability.

Samsung Pay can be used at parking terminals, restaurants, and basically everywhere else

Like I said already, Samsung Pay in my experience has been almost perfect – using it to do things like pay for parking at a terminal, which was surprising because I didn’t think it was going to work when I first looked at it. Many popular retailers have replaced their point-of-service (POS) systems by requiring you to insert the chip in your credit card to process the payment, but Samsung Pay still works with them. The only places that it doesn’t seem to work are ATMs.

Additional incentives to use it

The more you use Samsung Pay, the more opportunities you have to win free stuff

Best of all, Samsung is providing some incentives in the form of rewards by using Samsung Pay – and that’s on top of whatever rewards or cash-back incentives you get from your credit card already. Using it gets you something in return! Essentially, the more you use Samsung Pay, the more points you end up earning, which you can redeem through the app on an assortment of things. So far, however, the majority of the points you accumulate can go to winning prizes in these “instant win” games. If you’re a power user of Samsung Pay, acquiring serious points thanks to reaching that “platinum” status, you can redeem points for items such as gift cards and various Samsung products.

And did you know that Samsung Pay can also be used as another form of payment with gift cards? Using the app, you can digitize those physical gift cards you have, so you won’t have to constantly remember to keep them on you when you’re out. Lastly, Samsung Pay can also be used to store your membership card, which yet again cuts down on having them on your keychain or something.

It’s not a secret

So while other phones catch up to meet what Samsung has done with its flagships, including its upcoming one in the Galaxy S8, there’s still no one else that can touch what Samsung Pay doing for mobile payments. The S8 will more than likely have a few surprises up its sleeves that we haven’t seen before, but Samsung Pay is that not so secret weapon that other phones still can compete against. And that’s a bit crazy when you think about it, just because phones like the LG G6 seemed to finally catch up to what Samsung has established, like having water resistance and wireless charging in its phones, but there’s still nothing that they have to combat against Samsung Pay. Considering how frequently I rely on it, the chances of me using a phone long term without a comparable solution it is very slim.

Have you ever used Samsung Pay? What about mobile payments in general? Be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below!

John Velasco
Storyteller, ongoing health nut, persistent complainer of running, & religious flosser.
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