Google Mobile Payments

Using the new Google Mobile Payments system, you'll soon be able to use your mobile phone /cell phone just like you do a debit card or credit card - and simply wave your phone to pay for goods and services!

Launched in May 2011, in conjunction with Mastercard and Citicard - both huge and respected companies, Google are first running a pilot of the system, just in New York and San Francisco. If that all goes well then Google Wallet will be rolled out across the US. When you read the smaller print though, the rollout is just for those people using the Sprint service, so there'll be a limited number of people who will be able to use the service immediately.

It could be considered that Google's pilot is so limiting that they'll struggle to attract take-up during the pilot phase. To be able to use the system you'd need to be in one of those cities, be with the right service provider, have the right type of phone (nfc equipped smartphone) AND happen to be shopping in one of the large retailers that is offering the system.

The new Google mobile payments system is being called Google Wallet as it enables your mobile phone /cell phone to act like a wallet, as you no longer need to carry cash with you either.

Your mobile phone is now your electronic wallet!

The details of the new Google payments system won't be clear until the product is available and start using it; it will certainly not be available worldwide at first - but areas where it is available will quickly be added.

Shoppers in other parts of the world have been happily using mobile payments systems, to swipe their phone at the checkout, for over 10 years - but for some reason the US has lagged behind this, with various vested interest parties never quite agreeing how it should work, or if it would be welcomed.

Using Google Mobile Payments Wallet to Pay by Mobile Phone

Mastercard mobile payments. Photo by Hkan Dahlstrm
Mastercard mobile payments. Photo by Hkan Dahlstrm

Using the Google mobile payments wallet to pay by cell phone/mobile phone, at the checkout - with simply a swipe - should prove to be faster, easier and safer for many users. It'll certainly mean one less card to carry with you and to juggle out of your wallet, then remember to put back while you're grabbing your purchases to get away.

And the Google mobile payments system will be free to retailers as Google hope to be able to benefit financially from targetted ads, even at passing Android phone users. Imagine that, you're passing a shop that sells beer, you bought beer last week, so an ad appears on your phone letting you know that the shop you just passed has a special beer promotion! Or would that be annoying?

At the moment retailers pay transaction fees to credit card companies, for the privilege of the convenience of being able to take credit cards - so this will be a viable option as retailers look to cut costs wherever they can and as the credit card companies won't be charged any fees by Google, they might offer incentives to retailers to use the scanners.

Perhaps soon Google mobile payments will be giving Paypal a run for their money - it's the perfect payments system for small traders, crafts people, market stallholders - and anybody selling anything on the go! This isn't just a system for the big organisations, the little guy can benefit from it too.

As for home shopping - we've not yet got to the stage where you could wave your cell phone/ mobile phone at your PC screen and instantly buy something, but I bet mobile payments sensors will be built in before too long!

But ... Paypal and eBay to Sue Google for Stealing the Secrets

The day that Google Wallet launched, Paypal and eBay threatened to sue Google as they alleged that staff members had left, taking the secrets of mobile payments with them, then used this knowledge to move Google Wallet forward.

Paypal are alleging that their former executives Osama Bedier and Stephanie Tilenius used trade secrets to assist their new company to create Google Wallet.

Oh dear ... watch this space I guess!!

A Quick Google Wallet Overview

What is Google Wallet: It lets you pay for goods by waving your cell phone near a scanner.

How Does Google Wallet Work: You need a special smartphone, with a special chip inside it. The chip then uses near field communications (NFC) technology to transmit the purchase details wirelessly to a secure central data server, where they're logged on your credit/debit card file. You do also need to type in a PIN number for each purchase.

What Do You Need to Use Google Wallet?:

At the time of launch, you must have:

  • An account with Sprint and be using their co-branded Google Nexus S4G cell phone.
  • You will need a Citibank Mastercard credit card.
  • You need to have downloaded the free app from the Internet.
  • You will only be able to use it in bigger retailers, such as Walmart or Macy’s, where you'll see new payment readers at their checkouts.

Once the pilot is over, more shops will take it, more phones will offer it.

Is Google Mobile Payments a Good Thing?

What do you think? Is Google mobile payments something you'd choose to use? It won't be long before this mobile payments technology is starting to spring up in your area, so can you see it could benefit you?

What do you think?

Google Mobile Payments Poll

Will you consider paying by with Google mobile payments system?

See results without voting

Photos by:

Mastercard, By Håkan Dahlström, taken with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II.

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Comments 6 comments

dali48 profile image

dali48 5 years ago from Germany

Thank you "earner" for your great Hub - "Your mobile phone is now your electronic wallet!"... I can't wait for paying with Google mobile payments system, etc... (d.48)

annmackiemiller profile image

annmackiemiller 5 years ago from Bingley Yorkshire England

wow - what will they think of next? Oh by the way... what is a mobile phone? LOL

hubzer profile image

hubzer 5 years ago from Fon florida ohio north carolina FON

Great interesting hub,Google knows the m-commerce is going to be huge.success2u Hubzer

earner profile image

earner 5 years ago from United Kingdom Author

A mobile phone is the UK term for a cell phone. I always forget they're called cell phones in the US!!

I need to update the above with that info!

CASE1WORKER profile image


on the one hnd i think it could be good, but on the other do i really want someone to know everything i do= I guess i am thinking that life is becoming so watched- it really is big brother territory

Hello, hello, profile image

Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

Thank you for all these inforamtion.

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