Before the beginning of July, Walmart announced that it will be undertaking a wide national release of Walmart Pay, the company's mobile payment system introduced in December 2015.
Walmart, after several recent rollouts and launches in 14 more states, now has Walmart Pay up and running in 33 states and Washington, DC.
Among the areas where Walmart Pay was deployed include high-population states such as Washington, New York and California. With its presence in 33 states, Walmart is nearing nationwide availability of its mobile payment system, though the company has already missed its promise of getting Walmart Pay available throughout the United States by the first half of 2016.
Walmart Pay works through the embedded feature on the main Walmart app for both the iOS and Android. The system is compatible with cards of most major banks, as well as gift cards issued by the retail giant.
To use the system, customers can line up at a checkout counter and then launch the app and access Walmart Pay once it is their turn. Customers will then have to scan the QR code that will be displayed on the screen of the register using the camera of their smartphones to enable Walmart Pay for the payment of their items.
Walmart is among the country's biggest retailers, boasting foot traffic of 140 million customers per week. As such, Walmart Pay could gain a wide following, especially coupled with the fact that other mobile payment systems, such as Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay, are not yet being accepted in the retailer's stores.
With figures from 2015 already showing that 22 million of the weekly customers use Walmart Pay, should Apple, Google and Samsung begin to worry? According to the retail company, Walmart Pay was not developed to actually function as a rival to the mobile payment systems of these companies.
"It was really a design around improving checkout, not just payment," Walmart Senior Vice President of Services Daniel Eckert said in April. He added that there was still some friction in the checkout process that Walmart Pay would be looking to eliminate.
With the purpose of Walmart Pay to streamline the checkout process through QR codes, the intended target for the system would then actually be the online stores such as the one operated by Amazon. With an easier checkout process in a physical store, Walmart could be looking to attract more customers to come out and shop instead of browse through Amazon's catalog online and buy items from there.