Google launches Google Wallet

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At its I/O Developers Conference, Google today unveiled Google Wallet, a new app for Android and Wear OS that will allow users to store things like credit cards, loyalty cards, digital IDs, travel tickets, concert tickets, vaccination cards, and more. other.

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It’s pretty simple, but it gets a little confusing from here on out. After all, Google has long offered a Google Pay app where you can store your credit cards for online and contactless payments. Back in 2020, Google has made major changes to Google Pay to refocus it on tracking your spending and sending and receiving money between friends and family members. At that point, Google even wanted to open its own bank account in partnership with financial institutions such as Citi, which users could manage in Google Pay. This project, called Plex, never saw the light of day. light of day and was quickly shelved after the project’s chief executive left Google just six months after the announcement.

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Image credits: Google

According to Google, Google Pay is currently available in 42 markets. Since Google Pay is still primarily a wallet in 39 of these markets, these users will simply see an upgrade from the Google Pay app to the new Google Wallet app. But in the US and Singapore, Google Pay will remain a payments-focused app, while the Wallet app will exist in parallel to focus on storing your digital cards. Meanwhile, in India, Google says that “People will continue to use their Google Pay app that they are familiar with today.”

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Image credits: Google

“The Google Pay app will be a wallet add-on,” said Arnold Goldberg, VP and CEO of payments at Google, who joined the company earlier this year after a long stint at PayPal. “To think about [the Google Pay app] how it is a more valuable application that will become a place for you to make payments and manage money, whereas a wallet will actually be this container for you to store your payment assets and your non-payment assets.”

Goldberg noted that Google decided to go down this path because of the rapid digitization we’ve seen over the last two years of the pandemic. “We are talking about ten years of change in two years only in terms of behavior and people that almost require digitization now, not what was nice to have before COVID,” he said. “It clarified our focus on what we need to do as a payment institution – what we need to do as a company – to rethink not only what we do in terms of online and in-store payments, but also think about what we can let people do with their digital wallets.”

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