Just a day after announcing five new developer SDKs, Samsung added more than a dozen new partners to its Samsung Wallet app. Much like Google Wallet, Samsung’s software stores coupons, boarding passes and loyalty cards with various merchants. With the 14 new companies supporting Samsung Wallet, the app now has 19 retail partners.
On Monday, as Samsung’s Developer Conference kicked off, I noted that the company was effectively trying to gather Android developers to its cause. With 1,300 attendees at the event, I’d say at the very least, Samsung has at least earned the attention of programmers who could build apps solely for Samsung devices. Whether that actually happens remains to be seen but some developers are tuning in so that if Samsung is successful, they don’t miss out.
That’s exactly what I see in today’s Samsung Wallet news: Big retailers are willing to take a chance on Samsung. And why not? It likely doesn’t take much effort to become a Samsung Wallet partner and Samsung sells more mobile phones than any company on the planet. Note that these Wallet partners aren’t small-time shops either: Today, American Express(s amex), United Airlines(s lcc), Virgin Atlantic, Malaysia Airlines, Amtrak, Valpak and others joined in with Walgreens, Expedia, Belly, Lufthansa, and Hotels.com already on board.
Obviously, these partnerships don’t guarantee that Samsung will be successful as it tries to differentiate itself from Android and reap the benefits of its own services and apps. They do lend credence, however, to the very idea that Samsung is trying to break away with new business opportunities in mobile by stepping on and over Android, which helped make it the mobile leader in the first place.