MWC 2015: Samsung Selects Oberthur Technologies’ PEARL as NFC eSE

Mobile SecuritySamsung has selected Oberthur Technologies (OT) to provide the NFC embedded Secure Element it will use in its newest Galaxy smartphone. OT’s PEARL will be used in all new Samsung Galaxy S6 devices.

PEARL boasts of a few key advantages over other eSE’s. For one thing, it offers the largest memory space. But perhaps more importantly, it’s certified by all three leading credit card companies – American Express, Visa, and MasterCard. That will prove essential now that Samsung is indeed going forward with the launch of its own mobile payment platform, Samsung Pay.

Speaking in a press release, the Managing Director of the Telecom Business Unit at OT explained that PEARL “offers various secure applications which allows end-users to pay, transit, authenticate themselves simply by waving their phone in front of a contactless terminal,” and added that for Samsung, the eSE “opens a new world of applications to address the booming market of biometrics and mobile payment solutions”.

Samsung’s selection of a high-end NFC eSE is an indication of the seriousness with which the company plans to pursue its own mobile payment platform. That will be important going forward, as the mCommerce market is already packed with some pretty tough competitors, and the endeavour could bring the company into competition against its closest strategic business partner as well. It will need the best technology it can get if it’s going to be a serious contender.