Samsung's mobile payments system will add support for online shopping in the US next year, according to a report from Reuters. That means customers will be able to make purchases on their phone, likely through retailers’ mobile apps, with only their fingerprint. Samsung also plans on expanding Samsung Pay to lower-cost Android handsets throughout 2016.
Both Apple Pay and Google's Android Pay already support in-app shopping, letting consumers order an Uber or buy something at Best Buy. Samsung is likely planning something similar, but the company didn’t elaborate to Reuters what its “online payment support" will consist of. The company could simply be talking about in-app shopping, although it could also be planning a way to let smartphone users pay for items through a mobile web browser, similar to PayPal.
Samsung is playing catch up in online shopping
Although Samsung lags behind competitors in online shopping, it has the advantage of working with more in-store retailers thanks to its "Magnetic Source Transmission" tech, which lets Samsung Pay work with older point of-sale terminals. Apple Pay and Android Pay, on the other hand, require that retailers use more modern terminals that support near-field communication chips.