May 24, 2016

Touchless Pay: The Wave of the Future

A customer walks up to your counter and waves their phone in front of a terminal…payment completed. One of the hottest trends in commerce is the growth in mobile payment, specifically paying by phone at retail outlets.

eMarketer suggests that these “proximity” or touchless payments will double by the end of 2016. They work using NFC (near-field communication) technology, via radio waves. Smartphones are equipped with chips that connect wirelessly to the terminal.

The advantages of contactless payment are clear.

  • Fast Payment  – Radio wave technology makes these transactions  almost instantaneous, far faster than the relatively sluggish EMV chips.
  • Greater Privacy and Security – No credit cards are exchanged, and a number of security features are built into the system. For example, the radio waves have a  range of about two inches. That limited range is the key to what makes NFC so secure – hackers would need to be practically hugging a customer to steal the numbers.
  • Increased Convenience – A quick wave of the smartphone eliminates the need to pull out a wallet. And since Android, Apple, and Samsung each offer phones with the chip, every smartphone owner will soon be able to pay wirelessly.

So what exactly are the differences between Android Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay?

Well, the good news is that they all use NFC technology, eliminating the need for three different terminals, and allowing your business to get up and running quickly. However, there are some key distinctions.


  • ANDROID PAY (formerly known as Google Wallet) was the earliest entrant into the touchless payment arena. The dominant player in the Smartphone market, Android has equipped most of its smartphones with NFC technology.
  • APPLE PAY uses the same technology in its phones (iPhone 6+ only), but Apple Watch is also equipped with the NFC chip, making it the most fun and convenient option.


  • SAMSUNG PAY offers NFC as well as MSC technology, which allows users to simply scan their phones over any CC terminal. This makes Samsung Pay the most versatile mobile payment system.

As customers become more comfortable with mobile payments, businesses will need to adopt evolving technology. After all, customers may forget their wallets, but they never forget their cell phones.
Find out how Touchless Pay can help your business.

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