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Galaxy S6’s ‘special function’ might copy a key iPhone 6 feature

Published Feb 3rd, 2015 12:50PM EST
Galax S6 Software Features Samsung Pay
Image: Apple Inc.

Samsung’s Galaxy S6 models will be unveiled in less than a month in Barcelona, Spain, at this year’s Mobile World Congress, though the web is already swirling with reports detailing the upcoming flagship devices and their features. Many rumors have suggested that Samsung has designed the sixth-generation Galaxy S from the ground up, determined to improve its build quality. Reports have also said that Samsung is preparing “special function” for the handset.

South Korean publication DDaily has obtained more details about the one feature that could set Samsung apart from all Android competitors this year — not Apple though, whose lead Samsung might follow yet again.

DON’T MISS: Another new report suggests the Galaxy S6 is the Samsung phone of our dreams

The Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S Edge are supposedly getting LoopPay integration that will turn the devices into mobile wallets capable of offering mobile payments to customers around the world. The feature might be branded “Samsung Pay” on these devices, as we reported last month, and it may work anywhere in the world.

Unlike Apple Pay — the exclusive iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 feature that not only took the mobile payments business by storm, but which quickly became a strong marketing point for Apple — LoopPay doesn’t need NFC support to work, which might help Samsung deploy it faster in more regions of the world.

Currently, Apple Pay works only in the U.S. and relies on various technologies including NFC, tokenization and fingerprints to protect mobile transactions. By Apple’s own recent account, Apple Pay has taken off, with two out of three mobile payments being made via Apple Pay.

Because it doesn’t need NFC, LoopPay could work with regular payment terminals in any market without requiring merchants to upgrade their equipment. The service simply uses a special piece of hardware that can be installed in mobile devices to replicate a physical card swipe, and it does it wirelessly without the user actually needing to pull out a card.

The technology does rely on tokenization, and will likely use Samsung’s fingerprint sensor to protect transactions.

BGR exclusively revealed design and hardware details for the Galaxy S6 a few weeks ago, including Samsung Pay. At the time, we reported that Samsung Pay will work with 90% of existing magnetic stripe payment terminals and NFC payment terminals, which appears to be in line with LoopPay’s claims.

A video explaining how LoopPay works and its security features — ironically, demoed mainly on iPhones including iPhone 6 — follows below.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.