If the store at which you are trying to buy that stick of gum has an NFC terminal, Apple Pay and Google Wallet work well enough. But if it lacks one, or is part of a competing consortium, you will have to whip out the antiquated plastic between the lint in your pocket. But that may change if Samsung has its way. According to multiple Recode sources, the Korean electronics giant is in talks with startup LoopPay, to develop a smartphone payments method of its own. (more…)
Wouldn’t you know it? It’s Wednesday. And you know what that means – it’s Google Apps Update Day! So far, app updates are available for Hangouts (available earlier this morning) Google Wallet, Inbox, and Android Wear. While today is not as hectic as last Wednesday in terms of updates, these improvements are certainly welcomed from Google. (more…)
Over the weekend, news broke that many retailers across the US were not supporting Apple Pay, shutting down their wireless payment terminals to anyone looking to use them. Unfortunately, and apparently unknown by many, this move by retailers does not just hurt Apple Pay users, but also effects Google Wallet users as well.
While the number of Google Wallet users may not compete with the amount of people who plan to jump on the Apple Pay train, Wallet users have not been met with many issues surrounding the service until Apple announced and released their own NFC-based payment system. Now with Apple Pay released, it appears that huge retail chains, such as 7-Eleven, Walmart, and Best Buy will soon launch their very own mobile payment app, meaning that they now have motivation to simply shut out all competitors from their stores.
Apple and Google may be betting on NFC as the future of consolidated payment, but ubiquity is far from guaranteed; many, many businesses need to upgrade their point-of-sale terminals, which could take years. That is why startups like Coin have looked to capitalize on the nascent wallet-slimming trend with stop gap solutions that have been, more often than not, more trouble than they were worth.
Plastc is the newest kid on the block, and its feature list almost reads like a blow-by-blow response to Coin’s many shortcomings. It contains an e-ink touchscreen which toggles automatically via a brightness sensor and is capable of displaying your signature, photo ID, and barcodes; it has a re-writable NFC/RFID chip for use with access systems; it supports chip and pin (EMV) terminals; and it has wireless charging mat. (more…)
Within the last week, Amazon snuck their new Amazon Wallet application onto Google Play and the Amazon Appstore. The app, which will be featured on the Fire Phone, stores gift, reward, and loyalty cards, so that you can access them at any time without actually holding the card. Once scanned into the app, you can bring cards up as barcodes or QR codes for using at merchants. With “supported” merchants, you can even check gift cards balances, similar to what the latest Google Wallet update offers.
This is not a mobile payment app. (more…)
Google Wallet received a solid update this afternoon that brings in features which could make the app immediately more useful. For one, Google Wallet now lets you manage gift cards (check balances) and redeem in stores using the app, rather than having to worry about carrying around the actual cards. You can also request money from friends, instead of only being able to send in the past. Finally, sending money using your debit card is now free. In the past, Google used to tack on a decent sized fee when sending money unless you were sending with cash that was already loaded in the app.
Participating merchants for the new gift card management include AMC, Best Buy, Nike, Sephora, Toys R Us, TGI Friday’s, and Whole Foods.
You can grab the update on Google Play now or sideload using the apk below. (more…)
Since it is Wednesday, and Google took most of last week off from updates, we are seeing all sorts of Google apps receive love this morning. First was Google Camera, but now it is time for Google Wallet. In the update, which brings the app up to build 2.0-R163, we are seeing sections of the app move around, but more importantly, Wallet now supports multiple Google accounts. (more…)