By Stephen Schenck | August 16, 2012 1:24 PM
Long-time Apple fans have probably been on the receiving end of an iTunes gift card once or twice, letting them redeem the balance on apps, movies, or music. This whole time, though, Google’s been missing out on offering a similar gift card option for Android users. It looks like that’s about to change, with some very convincing evidence arriving for both gift cards and a new Play Store wishlist.
The latest Play Store update contains the code and graphic resources to prepare the app to start accepting payment via gift cards. As if that wasn’t enough, some leaked pics have emerged that show just how these pre-paid cards will be packaged at retail. There’s no word yet on just when Google might start selling them, when it might activate the redemption code in the Play Store app, or just where these cards will be available for purchase.
The wishlist code is a little more confusing. It looks like you’ll be able to select apps to add to the list, but it’s not clear just what happens next. Maybe Google will let you share the list over Google+, giving your friends the opportunity to purchase apps for you.
Finally, while we’re talking about Google and purchases, Google Wallet is getting a new partner with Discover. We recently learned about how Google would side-step credit card companies’ reluctance to support Google Wallet by setting up a virtual MasterCard through which to conduct transactions. Now it appears that Discover customers won’t have to jump through that hoop. Finally, another company that doesn’t seem to be actively conspiring against Google Wallet!