4 Comments

Summary:

Google Wallet gets a new lease on life: The updated software is now compatible with Android 2.3 or better across all carriers. Don’t get too excited if you have an NFC smartphone though; you’re still limited by carrier.

Google Wallet
photo: Google

After stagnating for a few years, Google Wallet gains a new lease on life with support on all U.S. carriers and on all Android phones running Android 2.3 or later. The software update is rolling out this week, Google said in a blog post on Tuesday. With the new app, you can send money through Gmail, store loyalty card information, get Google Offers to save money and see all transactions in a centralized, digital wallet.

Google says the 29 devices that currently support NFC payments for in-store purchases can still use the feature. Unfortunately, the same carrier restrictions that previously applied to NFC support are still in place. That means the Moto X, for example, can be used for NFC payments if the phone is on Sprint or US Cellular, but not for the same handset on T-Mobile, AT&T, or Verizon, which have their own joint payment system called Isis.

That’s a shame because I had grown rather accustomed to using Google Wallet and NFC to pay for items. Here’s a look at my first NFC transaction on the Galaxy Nexus from nearly two years ago.

  1. The whole ISIS thing has been disappointing. If they really wanted to raise another standard (and get the resulting profits from it) They should have put a lot more money in resources into rolling it out. It was only in Salt Lake City forever. Good luck with that.

    Share
  2. Is GW popular? I have never used it but I don’t see how it is any more convienent than a debit card.

    Share
    1. I use it every chance I can, which is actually in more places than people realize. I was using an NFC chip in my AMEX card for contactless payments but can do the same with a Google Wallet supported phone.

      Share
  3. If you consider Google Wallet a failure, then ISIS has been a monumental failure. Carriers should be prohibited from restricting phone apps. I used Google Wallet frequently when I had a rooted Android phone. Now I use a Droid DNA that I don’t want to root.

    Share

Comments have been disabled for this post