Samsung Pay add 38 more banks and credit unions

ALMOST two million more Australians will be able to use their smartphone as a credit card today in a move Samsung promised would take the country "a step closer" to ditching traditional wallets entirely.

The smartphone giant will add 38 financial institutions to its Samsung Pay app, allowing customers from Credit Union Australia, Australian Unity and more to pay by tapping their smartphone or smartwatch at the cash register.

Samsung Pay, which launched one year ago, is still trailing its Apple and Google rivals, but all three now offer payments from more than 40 institutions.

Samsung Australia mobile division vice-president Richard Fink said the latest deal, secured with payment solutions provider Cuscal, "brings us a step closer to helping customers replace their wallets with their Samsung smartphone or smartwatch".

The deal will bring the number of potential Australian Samsung Pay users to more than 10 million, after Westpac joined the group in April.

Samsung mobile payments head Mark Hodgson said the company was in discussions with a number of institutions that had yet to sign up to smartphone payment technology but customers were proving more keen to use the technology.

"One of the challenges for Samsung has been bringing issuers on board," he said.

"People who have loaded a card and tried it are using it, and many are using it every month."

The new deal brings Samsung Pay's number of providers to 41, including Westpac and Citibank, but Apple Pay now boasts 50 Australian institutions and Google's Android Pay has 46, both including ANZ and ING Bank.