November 19, 2015
There is some newly surfaced information about the expected launch of LG pay. After the launch of Apple Pay, other handset players have been building their mobile payments strategy but Samsung was the first one to follow suit by launching Samsung Pay in September. LG Electronics' mobile payment system can be used across all LG smartphones, unlike Samsung Pay which is available only in the recent Samsung smartphone models, South Korean wire service Yonhap reported on Thursday, without citing a specific source.
LG Electronics said on Thursday (11/19) that it had signed an agreement to develop its own mobile payment service called LG Pay. LG, which signed the agreement with South Korea's largest and second-largest credit card firms Shinhan Card Co Ltd* and KB Kookmin Card Co Ltd**, did not give a timetable or description of its planned technology.
The mobile payment market is getting crowded as smartphone makers like Apple and Samsung Electronics have launched their own mobile payment services. We had talked about LG's interests in the payments space earlier. LG Uplus was also poised to launch a mobile payment service in China in collaboration with KB Kookmin Card and China UnionPay. LG Uplus has now become the first company, among non-Chinese companies, to establish a successful partnership with UnionPay.
In February this year, the technology giant had also come out with a new and improved smartwatch that can not only connect to LTE networks but also perform mobile payments without the need of connecting to a smartphone. The NFC chip in the watch enables it to perform mobile payments without pairing with a smartphone. The new smartwatch model is called Watch Urbane LTE. The watch runs on the Android Wear platform. Android Wear, the wearable version of the popular mobile OS, brings much promise for payment systems.
Even the giants in payments see a big potential in Android Wear. To cite an example, PayPal offers an app for Android Wear which allows users to check-in to pay at local stores, redeem offers and receive payment notifications on-the-go.
At the end of October, LG said its mobile division suffered its first operating loss in more than a year, dragging down the company's overall earnings for the 3rd quarter. LG Electronics said it shipped 15 million smartphones during the quarter, but its smartphones could not command high prices.
*According to Wikipedia: Shinhan Card Co. Ltd. is Korea's biggest, global top-five credit card company. Headquartered in Seoul, Korea, the company has a partnership with Shinhan Capital and is an affiliate of Shinhan Financial Group. Shinhan Card was established in 1990 as a technical and business company licensed by Shinhan Bank. It introduced the technology of sending virtual one-time card numbers in Visa's 3-D Secure first in the world for its customers' security.
**According to Bloomberg: KB Kookmin Card, Co., Ltd. engages in the issuance of credit cards primarily in South Korea. It also provides revolving payments, cash services, card loans, installment, and other services. It serves individuals, enterprises, and merchants. The company was founded in 1987 and is headquartered in Seoul, South Korea. KB Kookmin Card, Co., Ltd. operates as a subsidiary of KB Financial Group, Inc.