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Samsung stops loading mobile payment tool on budget phones

2018/07/08 10:01

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SEOUL, July 8 (Yonhap) -- Samsung Electronics Co. recently stopped embedding its mobile payment system, Samsung Pay, in budget smartphones, industry watchers said Sunday, apparently to save costs by excluding the feature, which has been less popular among teens and senior users.

Among 10 smartphones released by Samsung Electronics in South Korea this year, only three -- the Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9 Plus and Galaxy A8 -- supported Samsung Pay. Other models with prices lower than 700,000 won (US$626) did not come with the payment tool.

In contrast, the Galaxy J5 and J7 smartphones, released last year with prices below 400,000 won, had the Samsung Pay program.

Samsung Pay is a mobile payment tool that works on traditional credit card machines based on magnetic secure transmission (MST) technology and also supports the near field communication (NFC) technology.

Industry watchers said Samsung apparently sought to cut production costs of budget smartphones, which mainly target teens and senior users who are less familiar with mobile-based credit card payment systems.

"As it costs roughly 5,000 won per device to apply Samsung Pay, (the company) is apparently seeking to cut production costs by excluding the feature," an industry watcher said.

Samsung's smaller rival and latecomer LG Electronics Inc., on the other hand, has applied its LG Pay on seven of eight smartphones released at home this year.