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The battle of mobile payment platforms!

The growth of mobile use and the ever decreasing price of handsets means that there are now record numbers of people using smartphones for every day tasks.

In recent years, consumers would tend to browse stores online, see something they’d like to purchase and then head to their nearest PC or laptop to then purchase the item. Experts estimate that Brits are set to spend £14.95bn via mobile devices in 2015, driving a huge 78 per cent increase on 2014. Broken down, this figure works out to be £474 a second!

Apple Pay was announced back in September 2014, and has only just recently launched in the UK (July 2015). On the back of this we’ve seen Android Pay, which is set to launch ‘soon’ and Samsung Pay with a release date that is yet to be confirmed in the UK.

Apple Pay

With Apple Pay it’s possible to pay for goods and services of up to £30 in the UK by tapping either your iPhone or Apple Watch to a card reader – as long as your bank supports Apple Pay.

You may be limited as to what shops do accept these kind of payments, some shops may not choose to accept it despite having the technology to do so.

Contactless terminals in the UK were limited to £20 transactions up until recently when the limit was raised to £30. However, these terminals will need a software update before they can accept larger amounts, so it could be a while before your favourite store accepts that £30 limit.

Apple Pay only works with the latest generation of iPhones, the iPhone 6, or an Apple Watch. This is due to the fact that previous generation of iPhones lack that vital NFC chip.

Android Pay

Android pay is currently only available in the US. It’s believed that Android Pay will gradually roll out once Google have released their latest Android offering, Android M 6.0 (Marshmallow).

Unlike Apple Pay, Android Pay allows the ability to rack up loyalty points and use them to make free purchases, Coca-Cola currently let fans in North America store up points and then claim a free can from a vending machine simply by tapping their phone against it.

Android Pay is secured in the same way you lock your phone, this can be a PIN, password, facial scan or fingerprint.

Android Pay will work on a wider range handsets as long as they meet the requirements;

As well as being used for payments in store, Android Pay allows the user to pay for purchases they’ve made in other Android apps, which means entering card details and billing addresses for every payment will be a thing of the past. With over 1,000 apps already planning to integrate Android Pay into their App Platforms, Android Pay looks like it will be a massive success.

Samsung Pay

Samsung launched Samsung Pay with their latest flagship offerings the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge at the beginning of 2015.

Samsung Pay works differently, rather than limiting transaction to NFC payments only, it will also work with magnetic strip readers (Old technology that is available in nearly every shop that accepts card payments)

Samsung has primarily partnered with MasterCard and Visa for the launch of Samsung Pay, which has now already launched in the US and Korea and is set to launch ‘soon’ in Europe.

Samsung Pay works in a similar way to Android Pay and Apple Pay, by allowing the user to add cards and then tapping the phone to the card reader to make the payment.

As it stands at the moment, only Galaxy S6, S6 Edge and Note 5 users will be able to use Samsung Pay, it may be that Samsung allow other NFC and fingerprint reader Android phones to use Samsung Pay, but, Samsung have yet to comment.

Whilst each of the three are very much similar, most people are unlikely to choose an Android, Apple or Samsung device based solely on its payment app.

Mobile payments are here to stay and now that Apple, Google and Samsung all have their own options for users, nearly everyone will have the ability to make purchases safely and securely with their chosen device.