Android Pay, Google's replacement for Google Wallet and answer to Apple Pay is being rolled out in the United States as we speak.
Rolled out means that it reaches smartphones of US Android owners gradually over the coming days.
According to Google, it enables Android phone owners to pay at "over one million locations" across the US and to store gift cards, loyalty cards and special offers on the device.
Android Pay supports all NFC-supporting Android devices that run at least Android 4.4 Kitkat. It supports credit and debit cards from American Express, Discover, MasterCard and Visa, and works on any mobile carrier.
One interesting feature of Android Pay is that it won't sent "real" credit card or debit card information when payments are made but virtual account numbers so that is becomes difficult to steal these numbers during transactions.
Google Wallet, Google's previous payment application for Android, has been updated today as well. Users who have Google Wallet installed can update the application on their device to add Android Pay capabilities to it this way without installing the official Android Pay application (provided that the device is compatible).
Those users who don't have Google Wallet installed can install Android Pay directly instead to add the functionality to their device.
Google in related news announced a shift in purpose for Google Wallet. Instead of being the main virtual payment application, it now aims to make money transfers between people easier.
The updated application allows you to send or receive money to anyone in the US using just an email address. This works even if the recipient is not a google Wallet user according to Google.
Money received can be cashed out to a debit card or linked bank account, or spend whereever Debit MasterCard is accepted in the United States.
Wallet becomes a Paypal-like service that enables you to transfer money quickly to others using email addresses only.
The main limitation of both services at this point in time is that they are only available in the US. PayPal operates worldwide for instance while Apple Pay works both in the US and UK currently.
Google revealed no information about service expansions to other countries. If Google Wallet is an indicator, it never left the US.
Now You: Do you use your phone or apps to make transactions? If so how and where?Advertisement
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.