Mobile | Technology

Google Reveals Google Wallet Mobile Payment App

On Thursday, Google revealed a mobile payment service called Google Wallet. The search giant’s latest app turns your phone into your wallet and enables you to tap, pay and save using your phone and NFC technology. Google has partnered with Citi, Mastercard, FirstData, and Sprint, and its currently field testing the application in New York and San Francisco.

The Google Wallet will initially support Citi Mastercard and a Google Prepaid Card and users will be able to pay for products in all shops where MasterCard PayPass is accepted. Currently 120,000 U.S. merchants including Macy’s, Walgreens, Subway, Bloomingdale’s, Peet’s Coffee and many others are ready to accept Google Wallet payments. Users will also be able to redeem their Google Offers via NFC at participating SingleTap™ merchants.

“MasterCard has pioneered mobile payments with our PayPass technology and we’re proud that it is at the heart of Google Wallet,” Ed McLaughlin, chief emerging payments officer, MasterCard said in a statement. “We’re excited to partner with these industry leaders today and committed to continuing to play a leadership role in the development of mobile payment technologies.”

Google says that the mobile app is designed with the goal to make it easier for the customers to pay for and save on products as well as to provide merchants with additional ways to offer their customers coupons and loyalty programs.

Google Wallet will enable users to store their credit cards, offers, loyalty cards, and gift cards, without the bulk. “When you tap to pay, your phone will also automatically redeem offers and earn loyalty points for you,” Google Wallet Founding Engineers wrote in a blog post.

Google says it is building an open commerce ecosystem, and will develop APIs to enable integration with numerous partners. Initially, Google Wallet will only be compatible with the Nexus S 4G available on Sprint. As far as the security goes, Google Wallet will require from a user to enter a PIN to transmit payment credentials which will be encrypted and stored in a chip that can be accessed by authorized programs only called The Secure Element.

The company expects to release the app officially this summer in the United States.

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