DUBAI: UAE residents are slowly warming up to the idea of making payments through new gateways on their Samsung or new generation Apple handsets, say retailers.
Known as Samsung Pay and Apple Pay, these gateways are now being offered at several retail stores, F&B outlets, petrol stations and even cinemas.
While Samsung Pay has been around since April, Apple Pay came to the UAE about a month ago.
Retailers said the gateways allow quicker transactions.
“We introduced Apple Pay on October 24. People want faster transactions and this gateway allows us to cater to our customers’ requirements,” said Nick Batey, general manager at Marks and Spencer Middle East.
Marks and Spencer operates 15 stores in the UAE, all of which are equipped with Apple Pay.
Registering on the payment systems is a two-step process on the iPhone X or Samsung Note8. It entails tagging your debit or credit cards on to the gateway system on your phone. Once registered, you will be sent a unique secret pin that you may be required to use at some places.
Among the many outlets offering these gateways are Centrepoint, Home Centre, ALDO, Zara and Costa Coffee.
“There is no chance of anyone seeing the pin or the information being stored on servers, making it a safer and more private way to pay than traditional card payments,” said Shemaine Jones, head of marketing, Costa Coffee UAE, which launched the facility three weeks ago at its 150 outlets.
Savitar Jagtiani, chief digital officer at Landmark Group, said, “The actual card numbers are not stored on the device. Instead, a unique Device Account Number is assigned, encrypted and securely stored in the Secure Element on your device. Each transaction is authorised with a one-time unique dynamic security code.”
Darren Jones, training and technical director at Gaurdian Wealth Management, an Abu Dhabi based financial planning firm, said, “This mode is safer than using a PIN that can be obtained fraudulently or a signature that can be forged. It may take a while to become a mainstream payment method in the UAE, but more and more suppliers and consumers are looking forward to using it.”