Google added a slew of new payment options to Google Play on Thursday, including the ability to use PayPal to pay for apps, music and movies in the United States. This is the first time Google has integrated PayPal into its app payment options, although Microsoft’s Windows Phone Store has had the ability since its inception.
Unfortunately, the PayPal payment method — which must be in addition to a credit card — can’t be used on devices or accessories; it will only work for digital content. Google’s decision to add this feature draws a contrast between Google’s and Apple’s payment approaches. In order to purchase apps or digital content from either iTunes or the Apple App Store, a credit card is required, although it is possible to create an account that only uses iTunes gift cards. Apple has accumulated over 500 million credit card accounts, which is seen as a huge strength for the company. Google appears to be taking a more laissez-faire attitude to acquiring customer billing information based on its carrier billing efforts and now PayPal integration.
According to the post on Google’s Android Developers blog, 12 countries are receiving PayPal integration, and seven new countries are receiving Google Play carrier billing. You can find a complete list of payment methods organized by country here.