Carrying credit and debit cards is so 2016. It’s 2017, and it’s time to get your hands on a digital wallet. Not sure how it all works? Well, we will give you a rundown of the mobile payments technology while keeping it short and precise.

With digital wallet there no longer a need to carry your regular debit and credit cards. If you adopt this new trend, you can get rid of your bulky wallet altogether!

As digital mobile payment systems become more commonplace, there is no need to carry your credit card or cash for paying your bills. Another advantage? Get added security and freedom from the loss of cards, fraud, and theft.

Samsung, Google, and Apple have thrown their hat in the ring and come up with their version of digital wallets called Samsung Pay, Android Pay, and Apple Pay respectively.

Best Digital Wallets and How They Work

#1 Samsung Pay

Samsung-Pay

Samsung Pay turns your phone into your wallet and lets you carry your cards on your mobile (in digital form) to have a hassle-free shopping experience.

Samsung, the makers of the Galaxy smartphones, needs no introduction as it has a plethora of products that have made your life easy and comfortable. The Samsung Pay app lets you pay in-person or in-app. Not just this, you also get rewards every time you make a purchase. That’s a good incentive.

How does Samsung Pay work / How to use Samsung Pay

With Samsung Pay, you can carry your credit, debit, gift and membership cards on your device. It just needs a tap to check out. It doesn’t take much effort on your part to start utilizing this service – simply add the details of your Visa, MasterCard or American Express cards issued by the partner banks in the Samsung Pay app, and you’re good to go.

Samsung Pay also stores any card that comes with a bar code. You can carry loyalty, membership and rewards cards with you all the time in your mobile or a wearable device.

You can carry your gift cards on Samsung Pay to make sure that you have them when you need them. The app has an option to buy, send and receive gift cards right from the app. Samsung Pay works in-store and in-app, you just need to load your cards on your device and check out with a tap while paying for goods or services.

Before the amount is deducted from your account, you need to verify the purchase with your fingerprint. Samsung Pay also has specific in-app partners, and you can get nearby deals delivered to your mobile while you are shopping.

Steps to use Samsung Pay

1. Download the app on your phone from Google Play and sign in to your Samsung account

2. Scan your fingerprint or iris and enter your pin for authentication.

3. Snap a picture of your card and provide your signature.

4. Go to the store and see how easy it is to check out.

List of banks Samsung Pay supports

Samsung Pay supports 1000+ banks and credit unions, and the list is growing.

Where can you use Samsung Pay?

There are many merchants who accept Samsung Pay including Amazon.com, Golfsmith, Panda Express, Southwest Airlines, Texas Coral among several others.

Privacy and Security

Your privacy and security are taken into consideration with a well-authenticated process. While using Samsung Pay, you don’t need to worry about your financial data getting exposed.

With this app, every transaction is authenticated by your fingerprint, pin number or iris scan. If you ever lose your phone, you can remotely lock or erase your Samsung Pay account with the Find My Mobile feature.

It has an extra security layer with its tokenization technology. Tokenization creates a unique randomized set of numbers which is used for each new transaction, and your real card number never leaves your phone.

Samsung Pay Device support

Compatible devices: Samsung Galaxy S8, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Samsung Galaxy S7, Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy S6 active, Galaxy S6, Gear S2 (with NFC only) and Gear S3.

Check out Samsung Pay

#2 Android Pay

Android-pay-digital-wallet

If you check the latest market stats, Android rules the roost when it comes to smartphone OS domination. It is the most popular mobile OS in the world, and there was no way it would be left behind in the Digital wallet race.

If you are an Android user, Android Pay is a new home for your cards. You just need to add your credit, debit, loyalty and gift cards to Android Pay and enjoy shopping either in stores, in apps or online.

With Android Pay, you can carry all your cards on your mobile device. Similar to what we saw with Samsung Pay, you earn loyalty points every time you use Android Pay. It is currently available for Walgreens Balance Rewards and Coke MyRewards cards.

How Does Android Pay Work / How to use Android Pay

Now you don’t need to enter your card details every time you shop in apps or online. While you are shopping, you just have to choose Android Pay while checking out. This saves a huge chunk of time that you can utilize doing other productive work, like finishing the next stage of Candy crush saga.

Steps to use Android pay:

1. Download and install the Android Pay app from Google Play

2. Add your credit or debit card from any bank that is included in the list.

3. It’s all set. Now pay anywhere either in stores, in apps and online with Android Pay.

List of banks Android Pay supports

Android Pay has support from major credit and debit cards from all the top US banks. If you don’t find your bank in the list, keep checking as Android Pay is adding partners continuously.

Places where you can Android Pay

Android Pay is accepted at millions of stores wherever contactless payments are available with many merchants. This list of stores and apps will give you a brief idea of where you can use Android Pay while shopping.

Privacy and Security

You can use all your points, rewards, benefits and protections with Android Pay just like you were using it with your bank. While you are paying at the stores, Android Pay does not send your real credit or debit card number, but it uses a virtual account number to give a protective layer so that your card details stay safe all the time.

You can use Android Device Manager to instantly lock your phone, wipe off all the data or secure it with a new password if you lose your phone.

Android Pay Device Support

Android Pay works on devices that are Near Field Communication enabled NFC enabled. (NFC is a set of communication protocols that enable two electronic devices to establish communication by bringing them within 4 cm of each other, one device should be portable like a smartphone)

Your phone doesn’t have to be the latest model for Android Pay to work because a lot of older phones also have NFC. Many Sony Xperia and LG phones give you the option to turn on and off NFC from settings. You can also test your device using NFC Tester app or see this list of NFC phones.

Check out Android Pay

#3 Apple Pay

Apple-pay-digital-wallet

Apple is one of the most popular smartphone brands in the world today, and with Apply Pay, they are trying to establish a foothold in the digital wallet market. Apple Pay lets you make purchases in stores, in apps and online.

You can pay with your debit cards and credit cards with a simple touch. If you use any of the Apple products, then you know how they try and make everything as convenient as possible for their users. Apple Pay lets you use your iPhone and Apple Watch to make any payment.

How Apple Pay works / How to use Apple Pay

You just need to hold your phone near the reader with your finger on Touch ID and if you are using Apple Watch, double-click the side button on your watch and hold it near the reader. Unlike other Pay apps, you can use Apple Pay on the web in Safari.

While shopping on MacBook Pro with the touch bar, you can easily purchase by placing your finger on Touch ID.

The steps may vary depending upon your device whether it is an iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch or Mac.

List of banks Apple Pay supports

Apple Pay works with all the major credit and debit cards from all the top U.S Banks. You just need to add your participating cards to the Wallet, and you will get the rewards, perks, and security of your cards making your purchasing more secure and easy.

Places where you can use Apple Pay

Apple Pay is accepted almost everywhere including grocery stores, boutiques, restaurants, hotels and much more. Take a look at this list of stores for an idea of where you can use Apple Pay.

Apple Pay Device Support

You can use it with your iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, or Mac. Touch ID is available on MacBook Pro also (in the newest versions)

Privacy / Support

Apple Pay is safe to use because it uses a device-specific number and unique transaction code for every transaction. Your card number never gets stored on your device or the server.

When you pay, your card numbers are never shared by Apple with merchants. Apple Pay never keeps transaction information that can be tied back to you, but your most recent purchases are kept in Wallet for your convenience.

Check out Apple Pay

Quick Comparison Samsung Pay vs. Android Pay vs. Apple Pay

ServiceSamsung PayAndroid PayApple Pay
Compatible DevicesSamsung Galaxy S8, Galaxy S7 edge, Galaxy S7, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy S6 active, Galaxy S6, Gear S2 (with NFC only) and Gear S3.All the devices that are NFC enablediPhone, iPad, Apple Watch, MacBook
Supporting BanksBanks Supporting Samsung PayBanks Supporting Android PayBanks Supporting Apple Pay
Supporting MerchantsSupported MerchantsSupported MerchantsSupported Merchants
Near Field Communication (NFC)YesYesYes
Magnetic Secure Transmission (MST)YesNoNo
Security featuresTransaction is shielded by your bank’s fraud protection and authenticated by your fingerprint, pin number or iris scan. An extra layer of security is added by Samsung Knox tokenization.If you lose your phone or if somebody steals it, you can instantly lock your device from anywhere by using Android Device Manager.Apple Pay never keeps your transaction information that can be tied back to you, your recent purchases are saved in Wallet if you need it by chance but that is as far as it goes.

Final Thoughts 

All the three Pay services mentioned above are incredible, and each of them stands head-to-head with each other. If you ask yourself the question: Which digital wallet is the best among Android Pay or Samsung Pay or Apple Pay?

As a user, it would make sense to choose the service that is compatible with your device, supports your Bank and is available to use in your neighborhood.

10 points to consider while making your choice

1. You should select your Digital Wallet based on your device. That’s pretty obvious, eh!? Not really. All three companies are designing their systems to be cross-platform compatible. So even if a specific wallet is not available on your device now, it surely would be available in the future.

2. Samsung Pay uses both NFC and MST (Magnetic Secure Transmission). MST is built by the company LoopPay which was acquired by Samsung in 2015.

3. MST emits a magnetic signal that imitates the magnetic strip on your credit or debit card and allows you make the payment.

4. Because of the popularity of MST technology with LoopPay App, MST card terminals are widely used around the world making Samsung Pay more widespread compared to Android Pay.

5. Samsung has a partnership with a variety of financial institutions.

6. Samsung Pay would have won the race because of its wide compatibility if it was not for the fact that it supports limited devices (high-end ones).

7. NFC may become the new benchmark, MST might get obsolete soon.

8. Android Pay uses NFC and depends upon third-party manufacturers of smartphones to spread the technology worldwide.

9. Android Pay and Apple Pay work with NFC technology, but NFC is not widely used yet since it hasn’t been adopted by many retailers. Both Google and Apple are working on getting more retailers to sign up for this program every day.

10. Experience while using an MST based payment and NFC is almost the same. So technology used should not be a deciding factor for you.

Which one of these do you use and which is your favorite? Share with us in the comments section, and let us know if you think we have missed out on something.