The Benefits of Accepting eWallet Payments like Apple™, Google™ and Samsung™ Pay

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The Benefits of Accepting eWallet Payments like Apple™, Google™ and Samsung™ Pay

A digital wallet, also known as an eWallet, is a piece of software that allows consumers to store digitized versions of payment cards and make purchases, both online and in physical retail outlets, via electronic transactions.


The first major eWallet was launched by Google in 2011, with Apple Pay following three years later. Since then, eWallets have seen impressive growth: in 2022, it is estimated that digital wallets will account for 28% of all point-of-sale transactions, up from 16% two years ago.

For businesses, the demographics of eWallet usage are interesting, too: 40% of digital wallet users are in high-income groups. Meanwhile, millennials (people aged 25 to 34) provide 35% of the total of these transactions made.

COVID-19 may also be shifting consumer behavior in favor of eWallets. eCommerce spending, which was already growing, has seen an uptick as a result of the pandemic. Additionally, customers in stores may prefer to make purchases via contactless payment options.

The integration of eWallets such as Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay can be greatly beneficial to software businesses. This article will explain how these three market leaders work, the features of each, and the pros and cons of these digital payment solutions.


Are eWallets Safe?

Businesses and consumers alike are justified in asking if Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay are safe. In fact, these solutions are considered to be safer than other forms of payment, such as credit or debit cards.

To increase security, all three of these eWallets use a process called “tokenization”. When a customer makes a purchase, a “token” – a randomly generated series of numbers – is created and used to process the transaction. The token can only be “unlocked” when it reaches its intended destination. If intercepted by fraudsters, the token on its own is completely useless, making this process highly secure.

On top of tokenization, eWallets often require the use of biometrics to authenticate a payment. For example, to buy something with Apple Pay, the customer must use the fingerprint scanner or FaceID on their device. This additional layer of security again puts eWallets at an advantage over other types of payment.

Apple Pay vs Google Pay vs Samsung Pay

Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay have many similar features, such as the security functionality mentioned above, and NFC (near-field communication) technology, which facilitates contactless payments with compatible terminals. But there are also some differences that are important for businesses to understand.

So, when considering Apple Pay vs Google Pay vs Samsung Pay, how do they compare?

Pros and cons of Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay

Let’s look at the advantages and disadvantages of each solution.

Apple Pay

Pros

  • Accepted more widely around the globe than the other two solutions
  • Broadly accepted by U.S. retailers
  • NFC technology
  • Highly secure
  • Wide compatibility across Apple devices, depending on the type of payment
  • Straightforward in-app and web purchases
  • Peer-to-peer payments between Apple devices

Cons

  • Only compatible with Apple devices
  • NFC only

Google Pay

Pros

  • Broad compatibility across devices
  • NFC technology
  • Highly secure
  • In-app and web purchase functionality

Cons

  • Though broadly compatible, usage is still low compared to Apple Pay

Samsung Pay

Pros

  • NFC technology
  • The only eWallet of the three to offer compatibility with MST terminals
  • Highly secure

Cons

  • Only available on select Samsung devices
  • MST technology is being phased out
  • No web purchase functionality

The below table collates the primary features of Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay, highlighting also where there are overlaps in these technologies.


Similarities

Apple

Google

Samsung

Technology / Payments acceptance

All can be used at NFC terminals and offer in-app purchases

NFC terminals; in-app purchases and web purchases on Safari

NFC terminals, in-app purchases, and web purchases

NFC, MST, or EMV terminals; in-app purchases

Device compatibility

Google Pay is available on most devices, including Apple and Samsung


iPhone 6 or higher; Apple Watch 1 or higher; some Macs and iPads for web purchases

NFC and HCE-compatible devices running on Android 5.0 (Lollipop) or higher

Samsung Galaxy phones since the Note 5; Watches including Gear S2 and S3, Gear Sport and Galaxy Watch

Security / Authentication

All use tokenization and have fingerprint capability (device dependent)

Tokenization / Fingerprint or FaceID

Tokenization / Fingerprint, PIN, password, or pattern

Tokenization / Fingerprint, PIN, or iris

Card usage

All accept credit and debit cards

Credit, debit, and loyalty cards

Credit, debit, gift, and loyalty cards

Credit, debit, gift, and loyalty cards

Country availability

All available in U.S. and many E.U. countries

60 countries worldwide

30 countries worldwide

24 countries worldwide

Limitations

Google Pay and Apple Pay both require NFC

Requires NFC terminal; only available for select iOS devices

Requires NFC terminal

Only available for select Samsung devices

Notable facts/stats

From 2018 to 2019, eWallet users increased by 140m people worldwide

In 2019, Apple Pay was available in 65% of U.S. retail locations

Google Pay had 12.1m users in the U.S. in 2019

Samsung Pay facilitates ATM transactions in five countries

Let’s consider the above table sections in more detail.

Technology and Payments Acceptance

Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay all use near-field communication(NFC) to make transactions. This technology enables communication between devices at short range, which is how customers can make a payment by tapping a compatible terminal with their smartphone.

However, devices offering Samsung Pay also contain magnetic secure transmission (MST) technology, meaning customers can make payments on terminals that accept card transactions via magnetic stripe. Apple Pay and Google pay do not offer this type of payment, but with MST on the decline, it is debatable whether this is a must-have feature.

Each option also offers in-app purchases, with Apple Pay and Google Pay supporting web purchases for secure eCommerce desktop transactions. Samsung Pay has yet to provide web purchase functionality.

Device Compatibility

Google Pay is the most broadly compatible eWallet, available on most devices with the right hardware (i.e. with NFC tech), including Android smartphones, iPhones, and Samsung devices.

Both Apple Pay and Samsung Pay, however, are exclusive to their respective manufacturers. For businesses, the prevalence of each brand in a given market should be taken into account when deciding which to offer.

Security / Authentication

As discussed earlier in the article, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay offer a secure payment experience thanks to tokenization and biometric security features.

The bottom line is that these are three highly secure payment methods, both for consumers and businesses.

Country Availability

All three are expanding rapidly, but at present, Apple Pay has the clear advantage in global distribution, with the technology available in 60 countries worldwide.

Google Pay is available in 30 countries and Samsung Pay in 24 nations around the world.

How to Accept eWallets

We’ve looked at what these digital wallets do, their compatibility, and where they are available. The next question for businesses is how to accept Apple Pay, Google Pay, and Samsung Pay?

Setting up mobile payments is generally straightforward. Businesses need to decide which eWallets they want to accept. They’ll also need to consider where these payments will be made: if in a physical retail outlet, a point-of-sale terminal will be required, while eCommerce stores will need to integrate software into the checkout process.

CardConnect’s Bolt solution offers eWallet payment integration both with the Bolt Terminal – built for point-of-sale retail environments with NFC functionality – and Bolt Mobile, a platform for eCommerce mobile applications.

Moreover, CardConnect’s ISV Partner Program gives software businesses everything they need to build, manage, and scale merchant payment acceptance.

CardConnect also has further resources on Apple Pay and Google Pay payment integrations.

Conclusion

For reasons ranging from security, user-friendliness, and consumer demographics – there are many benefits for businesses (and their customers) that choose to leverage digital wallet payments.

With digital wallets making a rapid ascension worldwide, ISVs looking to expand merchant payment acceptance – both in eCommerce and point-of-sale environments – should consider these mobile solutions.