Update: Google Wallet gets official launch
Download of app to Nexus S phones on Sprint to begin
Computerworld - Google officially launched its Google Wallet application late Monday for NFC-ready Sprint Nexus S 4G phone users.
The application launches initially for Citi MasterCard credit card holders, but Google also said Monday that Visa, Discover and American Express will be able to add their cards to future versions of Google Wallet.
The application, first announced in May, was described in a Google blog on Monday.
Google said it would begin rolling out Google Wallet to Nexus S customers through an over-the-air update; customers need to look for the "Wallet" app on the phone.
A two-minute video demo of the app is included.
"This is still just the beginning, and while we're excited about this first step, we look forward to bringing Google Wallet to more phones in the future," said Osama Bedier, vice president of payments at Google.
The Google Wallet works with MasterCard PayPass payment terminals with the transaction enabled via wireless Near Field Communication (NFC) technology. Users must enter a PIN in the application to enable each payment, which is done by passing the Nexus S phone close to the payment terminal.
While Google says in its materials that there are "hundreds of thousands" of PayPass terminals, a MasterCard representative at a sneak peek last week said there are about 150,000 at various retail locations in the U.S. Some of the terminals still need software upgrades to work with the phones.
Some Google officials said the Google Wallet would launch in San Francisco and New York initially, but the Google Wallet site lists many in even small locations where there are PayPass terminals, including several drug stores in Harrisonburg, Va., a college town of about 40,000.
Visa said in a separate statement that its has licensed Google to use Visa's PayWave technology, used in "hundreds of thousands" terminals in retail locations worldwide.
Visa account holders will be able to use their Visa accounts to add their credit, debit and prepaid accounts to Google Wallet, but Visa didn't describe a timeline for when that function would be enabled.
Google said it will allow users to add any bank card to a Google Prepaid Card and they will receive $10 to try the service. The card is virtual, not a physical card, and is available with the Google Wallet app on the phone, a spokeswoman said late Monday.
Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His e-mail address is email@example.com.
- Isis CTO accuses retailers of turning off NFC and smartcard payment tech
- How apps are changing fast food
- Starbucks hits $1B in mobile payment revenues in 2013, analysis says
- Are we giving up on mobile payments already?
- Get a free smoothie for an NFC tap
- Facebook to test new mobile payment service
- Isis mobile wallet to roll out nationwide this year
- Google Wallet chief's resignation another bad sign for NFC
- RIM gets Visa approval for mobile payments via NFC
- Mobile payments adoption in U.S. could take years
Read more about Mobile Apps in Computerworld's Mobile Apps Topic Center.
- Gartner Magic Quadrant for Mobile Application Development Platforms As unprecedented numbers of enterprises build mobile applications, the mobile application development platform market continues to grow and evolve rapidly.
- The Total Economic Impact of IBM's Worklight Platform Mobile is the fastest growing consumer technology in history. As enterprises build apps to engage these new users they are facing increased complexity...
- Improve Your Mobile Application Security with IBM Worklight IBM® Worklight helps organizations extend their business across multiple mobile devices. It provides an open, comprehensive and advanced mobile application platform to help...
- Unlock the Value of Enterprise Mobility Download this guide and learn how to manage the secure deployment of enterprise mobile apps and data, while still encouraging the levels of...
- It's Chaos Out There Worried about your mobile apps? You should be; it's chaos out there. Check out this humorous video and see if you can recognize...
- Cloud Knowledge Vault Learn how your organization can benefit from the scalability, flexibility, and performance that the cloud offers through the short videos and other resources... All Mobile Apps White Papers | Webcasts
Our new weekly Consumerization of IT newsletter covers a wide range of trends including BYOD, smartphones, tablets, MDM, cloud, social and what it all means for IT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!