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When the Samsung Pay mobile payment system launched way back in 2015 together with Andorid Pay, seemingly to counter the Apple Pay endeavor that had appeared the prior year, it was the most versatile of the three technologies. Why?

Well, it supported the magnetic stripe technology (MST), in addition to the NFC chip that everyone else used. That meant that it was compatible with the legacy MST standard that most POS terminals in the US supported at the time. 

You just placed your phone close to the place where cards are swiped, and it sent a magnetic signal that mimics a regular credit or debit card, making it possible to pay using your phone in places where Apple and Android Pay users can’t. 

The Galaxy S21, S21+, and S21 Ultra can no longer imitate bank cards

Too bad, as it was a convenient feature not without its hiccups, like having to explain to the cashier that it will actually work like a card even though it didn’t register the first one or two times. In any case, it seems that there is finally a critical mass of NFC-enabled terminals everywhere, so that we can all move on in mobile payments technology.