If you are in the United States and you probably own a Samsung phone, two apps, Google pay and Samsung pay, are apparently present in your phone and you may probably be thinking these two are the same since you have an android phone from Samsung anyway. You may also not have a Samsung phone but you keep seeing notifications relating to Samsung pay. This may be pretty confusing. One thing to note first is that these two apps are actually very different.

Samsung had made intentions of inventing its payment platform though that had remained to be a vague idea till the arrival of the Galaxy Note 5. Samsung pay is an app that you use to feed your credit, debit, gift and loyalty cards, which are then reflected in the phone and used to pay your bills in stores. Samsung pay is viable in stores that are NFC- supportive though the tough part of handling this is a technology known as Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST) which it got with the LoopPay company. The payment method using this kind of technology actually looks like a real-card swipe payment, thus, it can operate where a virtual swipe payment is made. The app is simply activated and authentication done using your fingerprint then the phone is held at the point where a card would normally be swiped and a terminal reaction would ensue, as if an actual swiping had been done.

Android pay is an app that has replaced the Google wallet mode of payment. On the surface, Android pay works pretty much the same as Samsung pay. Android pay uses Near Field Communication (NFC) mode of payment just like Google wallet. All you are required to do is feed all your credit and debit cards into the Android pay application after which you virtually pay with them in the store using your phone. What you required to have is a phone that has a secure screen lock, could be a PIN, pattern, fingerprint or password.

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Coming to the question of which application to choose, to begin with, if you do not have a Samsung phone, your only option is the Android pay. It is also worth noting that Android pay does not support all types of cards and banks. You may be obliged to use a secondary pin for authentication in order to add a card, which still comes with the disadvantage that you cannot enjoy all the points and rewards from the issuer of your credit card. On Samsung pay, the disadvantage goes to those using older phones which do not have the Samsung pay application. Samsung pay does not work on non-Samsung phones unlike Android pay which can, but with some form of twisting. Having a Galaxy S6, Note 5, S6 edge+ or S6 edge from a recognized carrier in the U.S. and with a supported card from a major supported bank leaves the choice quite clear for you; Samsung pay. Though the requirements for Samsung pay seem to be on a tough list that cuts down on the number of its users, the good thing with it is that it’s accepted in quite a number of stores. Having a Samsung phone also allows you to have the Android pay beside the Samsung pay thus pretty much of the option is yours.

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