Samsung unveiled its new Gear S3 smartwatch a couple of months ago at the IFA 2016 convention in Berlin. The new smartwatch features an updated design as well as a host of new features. It also has support for Samsung’s mobile payment service, aptly called Samsung Pay. It has been reported today that Samsung Pay will work on the Gear S3 as long as the smartwatch is paired to any Android smartphone that’s running Android 4.4 KitKat and up.
This is an important distinction, particularly when comparing the service with rival mobile payment services. Samsung Pay on Gear S3 won’t lock users to the company’s own smartphones. Users can choose to hook up their Gear S3 to any other Android smartphone and they will also be able to use Samsung Pay as long as the device is running Android 4.4 KitKat or higher.
This important distinction is what might help Samsung gain a lead over the likes of Apple Pay which locks users within the Cupertino company’s ecosystem. Samsung can thus appeal to a broader customer base as it can bring in customers who are interested in purchasing its new smartwatch but not necessarily interested in buying its smartphones.
Samsung is selling two models of the Gear S3. The Gear S3 classic and the LTE-compatible Gear S3 frontier. Both have been officially confirmed for the United States and will be released come November 18th.