Big Google Wallet push expected for I/O this spring

Google Wallet sorely needs some reinvigoration. The aging service is seeing itself hugely outpaced by newcomer Apple Pay, and if Wallet has any hope of rising to meet Apple’s challenge, it’s going to take some fresh new ideas. We’ve already hear about a couple ways Google could be thinking to get Wallet back on track, including rumors of a Softcard buyout and a new Bluetooth-based payment system that wouldn’t rely on NFC. Now a new report claims that Google will be introducing its next Wallet plans at I/O 2015, and it could be doing so with the backing of some major carriers.

Google Wallet and carrier interests have long been in conflict with each other, but they may have found a common foe in Apple Pay. Google’s seen Apple succeed in ways Wallet never did, while carriers are reportedly frustrated that Apple’s making all this money off mobile payments while they see no direct benefit themselves. Now Google and the carriers might find their best chance of future success by banding together.

There’s also pressure from Android OEMs like Samsung, with which its LoopPay acquisition has set itself up to get into the mobile payment game for itself. Exactly what will come of all this isn’t yet clear, but it’s sounding increasingly likely that I/O 2015 will spell the opening of a new chapter for Google Wallet.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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Stephen Schenck
Stephen has been writing about electronics since 2008, which only serves to frustrate him that he waited so long to combine his love of gadgets and his degree in writing. In his spare time, he collects console and arcade game hardware, is a motorcycle enthusiast, and enjoys trapping blue crabs. Stephen's first mobile device was a 624 MHz Dell Axim X30, which he's convinced is still a viable platform. Stephen longs for a market where phones are sold independently of service, and bandwidth is cheap and plentiful; he's not holding his breath. In the meantime, he devours smartphone news and tries to sort out the juicy bits Read more about Stephen Schenck!