ANZ bank adds Samsung Pay to its mix of wallets

Australia and New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) has announced the availability of Samsung Pay to customers with an eligible Visa credit or debit card, making ANZ the only bank in Australia to offer four payment solutions across both Android and iOS.

Samsung Pay, which launched in Australia with American Express early last year, is available wherever near-field communication (NFC) payments are accepted, and is compatible on Samsung devices such as the Gear S3 smartwatch and the Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus smartphones.

“It made sense for us to introduce Samsung Pay in Australia given its strong market share and open approach to technology that its customers highly value,” said ANZ managing director of products Bob Belan.

“ANZ customers are now best placed to select which mobile payment service they want to use and with the addition of Samsung Pay we continue to offer the best range of the major banks in Australia.”

The introduction of Samsung Pay marks the fourth mobile payment service ANZ offers. The bank claimed it was the first to work with Android Pay. ANZ also took its Android-based ANZ Mobile Pay to market in February last year.

38 financial institutions went live with Samsung Pay last month. MyState Bank announced on Monday that it had also added it to its offering.

“MyState was one of the first banks to offer customers Apply Pay and Android Pay in the second half of 2016 as part of its ongoing banking technology transformation,” said Chris Thornton, MyState general manager of product. “The introduction of Samsung Pay is another significant milestone in MyState’s strategy to use the latest online and digital technology to provide customers with an exceptional experience.”

Samsung Pay has now paired with over 40 payment card brands and over 100 different types of loyalty cards. The platform boasts over 870 bank partnerships worldwide and has processed more than 240 million transactions over the past 18 months.

Westpac, Citibank, and Teachers Mutual Bank are among the 40-plus financial institutions offering the service in Australia.

Fintech analyst Juniper Research estimates that the number of users of Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Android Pay exceeded 100 million for the first time during the first half of this year, and will hit 150 million by the end of this year.

Apple Pay is predicted to reach 86 million users by the end of 2017, while Samsung Pay is forecast by Juniper to reach 34 million, and Android Pay 24 million.

Although Apple Pay has been flagged as the most popular wallet, its rollout in Australia has been stifled; ANZ is the only member of the big four banks to adopt the iPhone maker’s wallet.

Westpac, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, the National Australia Bank, and Bendigo and Adelaide Bank had previously sought regulatory approval to collectively negotiate with third-party mobile providers such as Apple on conditions relating to competition, best practice standards, and efficiency.

Throughout the process, the banks claimed they wanted access to the NFC controller in iPhones and reduced their argument earlier this year to solely focus on it, as Apple currently does not allow any other entity direct access to its technology.

The group argued that access would enable them to offer their own integrated digital wallets to iPhone customers in competition with Apple’s digital wallet without using Apple Pay — something Apple wanted to avoid.

The banks lost their fight in March, with the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) handing down a determination denying authorisation.

Prior to the determination from the ACCC, the banks baulked at settling for payment alternatives such as Samsung Pay, calling them “unrealistic” in the Australian market.

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