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What Samsung Pay needs to watch when it launches in India next year

Samsung Pay, the payments solution of Samsung Electronics, will be available in India in the first half of next year as it expands to new countries, reports Business Korea. Currently the service is live in seven countries including Korea, the United States, Australia and Singapore. Sammobile, a news portal which tracks information from Samsung, reports that the company will be bringing in Samsung Pay to its mid range smartphones to increase penetration in the country.

It added that Samsung had already tied up with most major banks in India for its My Money Transfer app for Tizen-based Z1 and Z3 smartphones.

Samsung Pay will have a ready captive market in India when it launches. According to an IDC report, Samsung leads the Indian smartphone market with 23% share in Q3 2016 with 8% sequential growth and 9.7% growth from the same period last year. Unit shipments in the Indian smartphone market increased to over 30 million in the quarter.

In contrast, Micromax’s market share stood at 7.5% while Reliance Jio’s share stood at 7%. Both the handset manufacturers have  mobile payments products in the form of the Udio and Jio Money wallet, respectively.

In December last year, Micromax and Transerv entered into an agreement to integrate the Udio wallet in Micromax phones. This would give Micromax users a native payments solution for financial and social transactions including sending or requesting money, splitting bills, sending gifts to friends, and making payments through phone integrations.

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Also worth noting is Xiaomi’s payments service called Mi Pay launched in September. This was the company’s first major foray into financial services. Mi Pay is only be available in China right now and has tied up with Bank of China and Union Pay, a card network in China. IDC’re report pegged Xiaomi’s market share in India as 7%.

However, the real competition would come in from Android Pay as it is increasingly coming pre-loaded with handsets with Android 4.4 or higher. As such, Samsung smartphones will be loaded with both Samsung Pay and Android Pay. Paytm with its 168 million user base is the largest wallet player in India. MobiKwik, FreeCharge and Oxigen follow.

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