November 21, 2011

Have you heard about Google Wallet? Google Wallet is a new mobile payment system designed and developed by Google. The aim of the new development is that users can use the payment system to store credit card, gift card or loyalty card details.

By storing these card details in Google Wallet and by using Google’s “near field communication” the aim is that users can make fast secure payments by using their phone at a “PayPass” enabled checkout terminal. Put simply Google Wallet turns a user’s smartphone into their wallet.

Now don’t get too excited just yet as Google Wallet, which was officially launched on September 19th, is only currently available for the Nexus S 4G smartphone, but many people expect the payment service will soon be available on other high profile smartphone’s.

The main concern with Google Wallet is the security aspect, as many people think that having the ability to purchase products with just a touch of a button may be unsecure. However, Google Wallet requires a PIN number and additional security to be used.

The Google Wallet application uses a computer chip called Secure Element to encrypt all of the user’s information. On top of that the application will require a PIN number separate to the actual phone PIN just to access it, and every transaction will require the PIN to be entered again.

Google’s new “tap and pay” system has been met with both excitement and apprehension, but the way it works is simple. You simply select the goods you want to buy from a store and make your way to a special checkout terminal.
Once you are within inches of the payment terminal, which is contactless, you simply enter your PIN and tap your phone; Google will take care of the rest and complete the transaction for you.

It is expected that in the near future there will be rival mobile payment systems that will try to compete with Google. In a recent interview with CNET, Michael Abbott the CEO of mobile payments venture Isis said that Google Wallet is “the best thing that could happen.” He went on to further state that “competition is what this space needs.”

So it seems that there will definitely be rivals to Google’s new venture and Google Wallet does seem an incredibly sophisticated and clever idea by the online giants, but do you think people will use their smartphone over their credit cards?

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