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Who’s Winning the Third-Party Wallet Race; New Report Examines Adoption of Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay

May 31, 2016

32% of all smartphone-owning credit cardholders have loaded a credit or a debit card to one or more of these third-party “pays” brands

Early on, the October 2014 Apple Pay splash prompted the question of whether Apple Pay would be the ‘next big thing’ to transform the credit card market. Today, the third-party smartphone wallet market has expanded as Android Pay and Samsung Pay address the large Android OS universe. According to a new report from Phoenix Marketing International, 32% of all smartphone-owning credit cardholders have loaded a credit or a debit card to one or more of these third-party “pays” brands.

Since most adopters are Millennials (18-32) or Generation X (33-48), incidence rates are impressive: 67% of Millennials and 50% of Generation X smartphone-owning credit cardholders have loaded a credit or debit card to Apple Pay, Android Pay or Samsung Pay.

“If we look at adoption alone (excluding usage), the approximately 23 million Millennial and Generation X third-party wallet adopters taken together point to the next big thing,” said Leon Majors, Senior VP at Phoenix. “Right now, it’s not much about winning the brand race as it is giving these ‘apped up’ consumers more places to shop. This is the current state but a burgeoning future market is wide open as bank-branded and retail-branded payment schemes enter the ecosystem.”

Credit cards are leading the way in terms of payment type linkages to a third-party wallet. The Apple Pay adoption rate enjoyed a mini-surge in recent months due solely to credit card loads.

“Apple Pay adopters have said from the beginning that they plan to add cards to the Apple Pay wallet,” added Greg Weed, Credit Card Research Director. “A year ago, 58% of Apple Pay adopters reported loading more than one credit card to Apple Pay; now the percentage has jumped to 74% — escalating the key issue of wallet position in a third-party wallet scheme.”

The research also examined other issues, such adopter attitudes, perceptions, in-app vs. in-store purchases and usage of Samsung Pay’s two payment modes, MST and NFC. The findings found in the Phoenix report are based on data collected in March 2016 among 3,000 credit cardholders as part of a long-term credit card market tracker, Credit Card Monitor.

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Mark Sutin,

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